I round the corner and suddenly I’m amidst the fray. A cluster of neon clad youths are bouncing about a concrete playground. Melbournians are spilling through the street in both directions. I pause to absorb the scene, watching the ebb and flow. It’s 11pm and the City of Melbourne is alive.
It’s clear that I underestimated Melbourne’s Festival of White Light 2014. I became one in an electric crowd of tens of thousands of people bobbing between illuminated artworks from dusk until dawn. I wasn’t expecting much but the chilled out vibe was infectious and our group of four wandered through the crowd towards the light.
Laser beams converged and intercepted at a point before rocketing into the sky. Down the road, outside the National Gallery of Victoria I found myself lying on the grass and gazing at the flashing images rotating on the side of the building. Alongside the Yarra River was a subtle light instillation in the trees. Arbour by day morphed into human faces this night. Ever so slowly one would twitch, blink or sniff. Enticingly creepy.
The finale for me was Flinders Railway Station, a very familiar part of my daily routine. Some bright spark transformed the mustard yellow exterior into a vibrant and colourful bouncy castle. Childhood abandon washed through the crowd.
This festival lit up buildings and faces alike. Mine included.
White Night with a splash of colour
The White Night Melbourne Festival was held on Saturday, 22 February 2014. This is an annual event, for more information on White Night Melbourne 2015, click here.