Vivid Sydney 2016

This article first appeared on Open Journal on April 4, 2016. Image of the Bjork Digital World Premiere at Carriageworks.

Sydney’s most dynamic winter festival, Vivid, turns eight this year. Hundreds of events will be held across Vivid’s Light, Music and Ideas programs, which span 23 days from May 27 to June 18.

Vivid Light

Vivid Light is a predominantly free program consisting of grand-scale projections, interactive installations and light art sculptures that brighten the city each night come dusk. The centrepiece of which is the lighting of the Sydney Opera House’s sails, this year titled ‘Songlines’.

Directed by the Rhoda Roberts, head of Indigenous Programming at the Sydney Opera House, it will feature animated works by six artists – Reko Rennie, Karla Dickens, the late Gulumbu Yunupingu, Djon Mundine, Gabriella Possum Nungurrayi and Donny Woolagoodja. Each of the six artists hails from a different clan, national estate or territory.

Other Light events will be taking place across the city, including the popular Light Walk and others at the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney, the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA), Customs House, Martin Place and Taronga Zoo.

Vivid Music

New Order, Anohni, Poliça, Ta-ku, Tiny Ruins, Bon Iver, Max Richter, Hiatus Kaiyote, Esperanza Spalding plus curated nights by Future Classic and Sydney’s former Goodgod Small Club are just a small selection of what’s on as part of Vivid Music.

The Music program encompasses the beefy Vivid LIVE at the Opera House and Vivid @ Carriageworks (which is playing host to the world premiere of Björk’s new virtual reality project, Björk Digital) supported by events at entertainment venues across the city.

Vivid Ideas

A bumper 160 events are scheduled as part of the ever-inspirational Vivid Ideas program. Exploring the creative industries, technology, design, architecture, innovation and visual arts, among the headline names in attendance are Jenji Kohan, writer/creator of Orange is the New Black, filmmaker Spike Jonze, creative director influence Margaret Zhang and House of Cards creator Beau Willimon.

Design program highlights include:

Media Architecture Biennale 2016
Under the 2016 theme of ‘Digital Placemaking’, architects, designers, artists, academia, government and industry will come together at the Media Architecture Biennale 2016 to explore how digital media and technology can help create more liveable cities. It runs from June 1-4 and includes the two-day Smart Cities and Urban Innovation Symposium on June 1–2.

Semi Permanent
Global design and creative platform and community Semi Permanent will be presenting their Sydney program from May 26-28 as part of Vivid Ideas, with a host of talks, panel discussions, exhibitions, workshops, installations and events that focus on education and collaboration in design, business and culture.

Good Design Festival
On May 27–29, the Good Design Festival will be held at the Overseas Passenger Terminal at Circular Quay and includes the Young Australian Design Awards, Design Entrepreneur Awards, the Good Design Forum and Showcase.

Vivid Sydney is on from May 27 to June 18.