Opening Night Lights – Vivid Sydney

Two words: illuminated faces. Yes, to me that was the common theme in quite a few of the installations at the annual lights spectacular, Vivid Sydney, which opened free to the public yesterday and will be on display until June 9, 2014.

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“Vivid Sydney is a unique annual event of light, music and ideas, featuring many of the world’s most important creative industry forums, a mesmerising free public exhibition of outdoor lighting sculptures and installations, a cutting-edge contemporary music program and the spectacular illumination of Sydney’s iconic architecture including the sails of Sydney Opera House.

Vivid Sydney is where art, technology and commerce intersect.”

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My journey started off at Wynyard Station as I walked towards Martin Place. I think I did a good loop of the area covered by Vivid but you would probably need two nights to cover it all.

The first of our illuminated faces appeared as the first installation where there was a camera and people could adjust their face according to the centre piece. Clever and arty.

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We also went past the ‘rare and exotic winter (sky) flower’ made luminous by lights.

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Colour3 is a space filled with industrial water tanks illuminated with LED lights where Sydney’s many food trucks were present including: Eat Art Truck, Poklol, Agape Organic, Jafe Jaffles, Bite Size Delights, Woofys and Cantina Mobil.

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At MLC Centre, they transformed the normally odd shaped food court into something called ‘The Urban Tree Project’. Well, more of a garden with a massive tree with bugs and slugs crawling about.

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There was this massive dome, too.

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Intel had a ‘catch the blue butterfly’ competition but it was ultimately up to luck because everyone ‘caught’ it. #toostressful

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The display they had was beautiful though.

We then walked back down the other side of Martin Place where the business people had their Friday night drinks at the Colour3 Pop Up bar. So jelly. #cantwaittilimwhitecollar

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Ok, my friend and I were deeply contemplating if we wanted to get Messina. Everyone, literally EVERYONE around us was holding a white tub filled with goodness. The camera guys were there and this would be our possibly first and last chance to get some special Psychedelic Psundaes without waiting! Literally 30 seconds for Messina #quickestMessinaserviceever

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Yup, we decided on the Silly Cone Chips. It has delicious mango sorbet that actually takes like a mango, coconut sorbet- which is alright.. and they really need to drizzle more blue berry poopping candy! I love that stuff! The choco chips were pretty nice and the banana caramel was more like a mousse inside a cone. Was it worth $10? I’m not too sure.. you could get half a litre for $10 at a normal store.

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After sitting down the steps for dessert before dinner we walked towards Circular Quar and checked out their Tetris Bin in front of Custom’s House. You basically had to throw in a piece of rubbish when the white light circled towards you and to put down an object. It was kinda fun but didn’t know which shape to expect.

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Custom’s House was the same as last year. It required someone to dance to the beat so the colours on the house would appear. #samesame

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Heading towards Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA), these funky little cicles got the kids rollin’ and screamin’.

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Next to it were buzzing butterflies if you clapped.

Oh, and of course, ‘Strictly Sydney’… really?

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The DF (dance floor) was a popular one for the kiddies too.

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#HiRay gave the opportunity for onlookers to ring a giant bell to keep the lights up on this display.

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Ah! We finally reached the visually appealing MCA after going through all these installations. There were heaps more but I’m just giving you a quick taste!

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And if you ever get stuck, there are information booths with maps to let you know where each display is. It’s best if you just follow the crowd (:

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So we kinda decided we needed solid dinner after sharing a Messina sundae at The Rocks. There were plenty of food stalls and some serious cooking machines.

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I decided on the japanese (made by korean) pancakes with seafood and gyoza! It looked like heaven and when I was walking to MCA to sit down everyone’s eyes were glancing at it! It was pretty yummy!! Might I add the hot dogs looked HUGE and were $10.

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Walking towards Overseas Passenger Terminal, we passed through a cherry blossom

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another facial light

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and the most picture-worthy installation- blue hexagoned tunnel.

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There was a massive line to go in but just walk right to the end and you’ll see it without queuing.

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How could I miss the iconic Opera House? This year was better than the random people doing random moves last year! I didn’t really understand last year’s but I loved the designs this year. There was a lightning storm, arty, colourful pattery things.. It changes every day so be sure not to miss it (although I don’t think anyone can..?)

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The buildings in the CBD were also part of the display as they were lighted up and there was a walky person hoping from building to building.

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Every Vivid needs a musical touch! Last year’s was the piano and this year’s is the xylophone !

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When I first saw this I thought they were rabbits but someone then mentioned that they were kangaroos! It’s like we’ve gone into Alice in Wonderland with these blown up animals!

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A second round of food trucks were closer to the Bridge

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and also a big screen of The Spirit of Patyegarang, which brings to life, and light a fascinating story from our country’s past!

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We walked until we were at Walsh Bay and could finally see the other side of the Harbour Bridge. Didn’t the mX say that Bridge-Climbers were asked to put on lighted vests? I think I saw them earlier in the evening…

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There are also light displays in Darling Harbour, towards the Opera House, Sydney Uni,, Carriageworks and other places. This took my friend and I three hours to do. There are so many pit stops and it’ll be a lights fantasy to your eyes. Light up your day by going to #VividSydney

Review Rating: =D  =)  =|  =(

Product (Vivid Lights Sydney): =D

Ambience: =D

Service: =D

Value: =D

Would I recommend going to Vivid Sydney to a friend? I think I went 7 times last year and I really liked this year’s too. I keep coming back and there is always something I’ve missed out/ haven’t noticed. Defs come, especially if you’re a tourist (you can even be one in your own city!)

Would I donate the money saved to my chosen charity? Is there a charity out there that supplies electricity to homes that don’t have any? I’m having difficulty finding one..

Highlight: Oh defs the displays. Those lucky bums who work around Martin Place and Circular Quay will have the best views. Grab some dinner from The Rocks and sit yourselves in front of the MCA with the Opera House in the background.

Suggestion of Improvement: we. need. more. bins. More. Tetris. Bins. TY. and paybe more seating areas so everyone can soak in the views. It’s crowded so be prepared to walk!

Ends: June 9, 2014


Angela Bee


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