With less than a week to go, Vivid Sydney reveals some of the lavish displays set to light up the night.

With the Vivid Sydney festival opening this Friday, the finishing touches are being put on the large-scale technological feats that will light up Sydney’s winter nights. TDC, the company behind Vivid’s projections and interactive technology, will produce 11,500 square metres of video projection – more than 120 million pixels worth – using over 70 projectors deployed in custom-made towers in and around the city. A highlight: the excitingly named Laser-Dragon Water-Theatre.

A render of Eyes on the Harbour at Vivid Sydney

Vivid Sydney plans to bring installations to locations all across Sydney, including the Museum of Contemporary Art, Customs House, Cadmans Cottage, The Royal Botanic Gardens, Darling Harbour, the Sydney Opera House as well as locations in Chatswood. While the full extent of the lavish displays won’t be apparent until opening night, TDC has released tantalising details of some of the installations with which they are involved.

For example, the video projection at Customs House will be enhanced this year with the world’s first ever multi-viewer augmented reality activation, using tablet technology developed by Huawei and Spinifex. Giant multimedia projections will light up the Royal Botanic Garden’s Garden of Light and audiences will literally be able to control the video projection, IMPOSSIBLE Voyage, at Cadmans Cottage. The installation by Propaganda Mill aims to take participants on a journey through evolving landscapes in which they are able to interact with their surroundings.

One of the most extravagant installations, however, will be the Laser-Dragon Water-Theatre. A technical first for Vivid Sydney, the installation in Darling Harbour will feature a 13-metre robotic arm, a dragon, 56 fountains, powerful lasers and 22 flame jets. The main show will play every half-hour and during the breaks, Eyes on the Harbour will allow visitors to become part of the spectacle. Sponsored by Vivid Sydney partner Intel, Eyes on the Harbour will allow users to have their faces captured in 3D, using Intel’s RealSense™ technology, and projected onto the 25-metre high water screen. Users will receive a link to a short video of their projection, which can then be shared on social media.

 © MCA – The Matter of Painting, artist impression by Huseyin Sami and Danny Rose

Vivid is always a spectacular event and Ignatius Jones, the Creative Director of Vivid Sydney, is certainly not under-selling it this year: “Vivid Sydney inspires, entertains and exemplifies the emerging technologies that are changing our world. It is a celebration that will blow away all who behold it.”

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