Winter light

Winter in Sydney is not really winter. Winter in Sydney can be a bit cool (ish). Yes, occasionally it does get cold (ish). Very occasionally, there may be a biting wind. But not most of the time. Not even often. And when it does happen, everyone talks about how cold it is. Brrrr.

For the past few years, perhaps to keep the spirit of Summer alive over the Winter months, Sydney has put on an event called Vivid – a festival of light, music and ideas. Vivid Sydney is the biggest event of its kind in Australia. According to the Vivid website, the festival is a world-class line-up of concert and music performances, public ideas programs, creative industry workshops and conferences.

I went to Vivid for the first time last week, with Spider Boy, Lulu and the Magician. As well as Vivid installations outside, we have seen indoor museum exhibition displays of light, as well as the beautiful natural winter light that surrounds us outside.

Here are some of our light treasures from Winter so far:


The Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) looking like it’s been the recipient of a crazy mosaic job.


The MCA outdoor cafe under lights at night.


This display reminded me of a stained-glass window.


This dynamic large-scale light installation, Affinity, is by artists amigo and amigo (Simone Chua and Renzo B. Larriviere). Vivid’s website explains that the piece represents the complexity and connectivity of the human brain. When people arrive at Affinity, there is a web of darkened dormant orbs, except for a small trail of light that bounces between them. As people touch the globes, light flows in, linking the orbs.


Circular Quay train station dressed up in red.


One of my favourite museums…


It’s here Spider Boy made friends with his shadow side…


We found art made of light…


Tupperware light fittings…


and giant lightsabers!


Meanwhile at a local club we discovered stage lights…


bright lights…


and on another day, afternoon sun bouncing off the water at Circular Quay.


Followed by a sunset at Rose Bay.

Winter doesn’t need artificial light to glow; Its natural light is beautiful in its own muted way. But Vivid is quite spectacular.  If you’re reading this on June 8th and you’re in Sydney, you can still catch Vivid, otherwise, it’s one for the diary next year.

Vivid Sydney light displays are on from 6pm until midnight June 8th, 2015 (some events finish at 11pm).

The Light Show is on at the Museum of Contemporary Art until July 5th, 2015.  

Check out the @MCA_Australia_Now on Instagram for some of the amazing light displays inside the Museum.  They’re better than my photos!


  1. This show going on until July 5th with its vibrant colors and light exhibits was so exciting looking! Wow! I like Vivid Sydney and saw you, Lulu and Spider Boy but did not spy the magician! He sure has his “disappearing act” refined 🙂

  2. Yes, you’re right, no picture of the Magician unfortunately! The outdoors light show at night wasn’t really conducive to good photos of people – the ones of Spider Boy were taken indoors at a separate light exhibition on a different day, and the one of Lulu and I was at a concert on a different night. There was one of Spider Boy and the Magician together from the outdoor light show, but it wasn’t clear so I didn’t use it. Next time!

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