Thursday, May 28, 2009

Setting Sail to Sydney

Photo by Mondayne, courtesy Flickr

If I ever get to Australia, and I'm pretty sure I will, the first place I'd like to see is the Sydney Opera House. It just might be one of the most innovative architectural structures built in my lifetime. Indeed, Danish architect Jørn Utzon, was awarded the Pritzker Prize, architecture's highest honor, in 2003 for his work on this magnificent building.

Now, a new form of art is enhancing the iconic structure located on Bennelong Point in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, a structure built in three stages beginning in 1959 and ending in 1973. The building itself has become a canvas for the artwork of music producer Brian Eno as part of a sound and light festival in the city. Eno's "77 Million Paintings" has also been shown at the Venice Biennale and the Milan Triennale, as well as in Tokyo, London and San Francisco,

Educated in fine arts, Brian Eno became known in the 1970s with his band Roxy Music which he co-founded with Brian Ferry. He has since produced records for Talking Heads, Ultravox, U2 and Coldplay.

The Sydney Opera house is being illuminated by his audio-visual work which uses "self-generating software" to manipulate 300 of Eno's drawings. He says the display is designed to provoke "visual ecstasy" and "heightened calm." With a canvas like the Opera House, I know it has to be spectacular.

Sydney Opera House chief executive Richard Evans said giving permission to project the work onto the sails was "not done lightly." He was quoted by BBC news as saying. "We're not coloring the opera house, we're actually kind of taking the art of the opera house and raising it to a different level."

The show lasts until June 14th. Now would be a good time to go to Sydney.--Ruth Mitchell

(c) 2009 - Ruth Mitchell - all rights reserved

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