TDC is providing technology and services to Destination NSW for the sixth annual Vivid Sydney festival running from 23 May to 9 June.
Vivid Sydney is a unique celebration of light, music and ideas that will see the centre of New South Wales’ vibrant capital transformed by a series of state-of-the-art visual and creative art installations. There are two components to Vivid Light. The first is the Light Walk, which is the public interface of Vivid Sydney. This includes numerous light installations by artists. Secondly, also forming part of the Light Walk, are projections onto some of Sydney’s most iconic buildings including the Museum of Contemporary Art and Customs House.
“This is our third year of working with Destination NSW on Vivid Sydney, providing a huge range of technologies including 3D media servers, 3D mapping, video projection equipment, projection tower infrastructure and sound installations, not to mention our highly skilled crews to manage the technology,” comments Kain Jones, special projects manager at TDC. “We have used our experience of working on Vivid Sydney for the last three years to apply the insights with have learned to how to adapt and continue to make sure that the elements TDC is involved in are amazing.
“As Vivid Sydney grows, new buildings and locations are added, so initially we spend considerable time analysing which technology is best-aligned to meet the artists’ vision. We get involved from the outset in installation design, mapping the buildings to enable the designers to create content specific to the outline of those buildings. We then work on optimal locations for projector placement, media server selection, lens selection and the number of projectors required to meet specific brightness (lux) output for each installation.”
This year’s Vivid Sydney programme includes a number of significant technological and creative firsts:
Kain Jones points to one aspect of a unique interactive installation at the new building of the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA), where artist-in-residence Ross Manning has collaborated with multidisciplinary artistic collective The Digital Shamans to give visitors the chance to projection-map the façade of the building using only their voice.
“There’ll be two microphones on a slightly raised platform. As the audience uses their voice to interact with the installation, various hidden layers of visuals and soundscapes will be revealed based on pitch,” explains Michael K Chin at The Digital Shamans.
Bringing together the worlds of live performance, interaction and visual art onto the original façade of the Museum of Contemporary Art, ‘Gamma World’ combines isometric designs, old school gaming, pop up 3D books and forced perspective using 3D and animation tricks that powerfully takes the viewers on a journey through changing worlds.
Stella Carmody, producer at Spinifex Group Sydney says: “What makes this projection so special this year is that we were able to combine our love of story-telling with the wonderfully inspiring artwork of Jess Johnson to create an abstract, engaging and playful piece of moving art on this iconic building.”
Urban Tree Project
If you ever find yourself wondering what grew in the Sydney before monuments of glass and steel, Urban Tree Project (right) in Vivid Sydney 2014 will show you. The CTA building in Martin Place will grow out of the ground to become a magnificent living tree within the surrounding urban environment to celebrate and reflect on Sydney’s original green landscape. Design and animation company, Ample Projects turned to TDC to provide the projection solution.
“This project had unique technical challenges, so the natural choice for us was TDC,” says Ample creative director, Nicholas Tory. “Ample designed a complex 3D mapping solution in collaboration with the TDC team. They were highly professional, providing projection design solutions for a cylindrical architecture screen with extreme focal planes."
The projections for the Urban Tree Project are synchronised with a stunning laser lighting show as is the case with TDC’s projections for the Vivid Aquatique Water Theatre installation.
Spirit of Patyegarang
Bangarra Dance Theatre is Australia’s leading indigenous performing arts organisation celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. To mark this milestone, the company presents its new production at the Sydney Opera House Patyegarang until 5 July and participates for the first time in Vivid Sydney with The Spirit of Patyegarang. Projected onto the southern pylon of the Sydney Harbour Bridge (right), The Spirit of Patyegarang is a video installation marking the first indigenous contribution to the Vivid Light Walk.
“Through a fusion of dance movements and music soundscape, and thanks to video projections supported by TDC, the important story of Patyegarang will awake and inspire with the sensations and emotions of ‘first contact’,” says Bangarra’s executive director.
In a poetic explosion of colour, light and sound, ‘Play Me’ will transform the façade of Customs House into a series of massive ‘musical sculptures’ that are individually selected and manipulated by the audience (right).
“Each of these ‘sculptures’ depicts a family of musical instruments which the audience can ‘play’ in real-time using a touch screen located on a platform in front of Customs House bringing it to life in glorious torrents of ever-changing colour, light form and sound,” says Sergio Carrubba, director and projection designer at Danny Rose, the design team for this project.
“Vivid Sydney is a great challenge for our company, the scale of this event is enormous in regard to projection technology required to bring it all together,” comments Michael Hassett, TDC’s managing director. “This year over 50 Barco projectors will be deployed in total, ranging from the brightest projector in the world, the HDQ-2K40 (40,000 lumens) along with Barco HDF-W26 and FLM-R22+ (both 22,000 lumens) projectors. This is a projection technology feat and not something that any company globally could pull together easily.”