Vivid Sydney is an annual celebration of creativity, innovation and technology, which transforms Sydney for 23 days and nights. In 2023, for its 13th year, Vivid Sydney will fuse art, innovation and technology in collaboration with some of the most boundary-pushing artists, thinkers, musicians and culinary experts of our time.
Mark the dates 26 May – 17 June 2023 in your calendar and explore the program of Light, Ideas, Music and Food now, united by this year’s artistic direction, "Vivid Sydney, Naturally".
Vivid Sydney is owned, managed and produced by Destination NSW, the NSW Government's tourism and major events agency.
Invigorating the city of Sydney with awe-inspiring art installations and 3D light projections, Vivid Light transforms our urban environment into a kaleidoscopic wonderland.
In 2023, Vivid Sydney’s free Light Walk is a massive 8.5km adventure covering Circular Quay, The Rocks, Barangaroo, Darling Harbour, Darling Square, Darling Quarter, The Goods Line and Central Station. See the city anew with 60 light attractions, including 26 international works and our largest installation to date, The Last Ocean by American artist Jen Lewin.
In 2023, Light also takes over Taronga Zoo with Wild Lights and The Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney with Lightscape, the world-famous spellbinding 2.1km experience arriving to Sydney for the very first time. Plus, Dark Spectrum opens up Wynyard Station's secret tunnels to the public for a one-off experience unlike anything previously seen at Vivid Sydney.
Music is place-making, it’s community building. It forms a thread that connects us to our natural urban environments, our families, our stories, our sense of belonging. In 2023, Vivid Music will elevate artists and truth-tellers to the world stage, shining as precious lights, beacons of togetherness and hope.
Vivid Music is proud to spotlight First Nations voices, whose songs have connected the oldest continuous living culture to Country for over 60,000 years, with acts including Yothu Yindi, Ziggy Ramo, Emma Donovan, Budjerah and many more.
We will embrace our urban and natural environments, with 23 nights of free live music at Tumbalong Park, roaming artists across the Light Walk, DJs at The Goods Line and shows across our iconic venues and landmarks, including Carriageworks and, as part of their Vivid LIVE series, the Sydney Opera House. Ticketed gigs include late night cabaret at the Vivid Sydney Supper Club at Mary’s Underground, A Bend in the River: A Tribute to Archie Roach AC and international acts José González, Yaeji and Cat Power.
Human beings are capable of great brilliance, innovation and creativity and yet we are in turbulent times. We need to re-think our relationship with the natural world and build a more sustainable future. Vivid Ideas returns to 2023 to challenge our ‘natural’ ways of thinking, whether by shining a spotlight on underrepresented communities and those using their creativity for positive change, offering cultural counterpoints to the mainstream, or creating one-of-a-kind immersive experiences. We will focus on what really matters – community, authenticity, respect, love and what we can learn from the natural world.
The 2023 Ideas program features iconoclast and renowned author Jeanette Winterson, experimental psychologist Jesse Bering and many more.
Vivid Sydney is proud to announce the addition of a new pillar in 2023 – Vivid Food. Food is an integral part of our culture and the perfect complement to our program of Light, Music and Ideas. As the culinary capital of Australia, Sydney has world-class hatted chefs, restaurants, producers and venues and Vivid Food is all about celebrating those that make our food scene so special.
AN AWARD-WINNING FESTIVAL
Vivid Sydney has been recognised by the International Festivals & Events Association (IFEA) and won 14 medals at the 2022 IFEA Pinnacle Awards. Vivid Sydney was also voted Australia’s Best Tourism Event in 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2018 and 2019 and Best Cultural, Arts or Music Event in 2017 and 2019 in the Australian Event Awards.
At the 2022 Australian Event Awards and Symposium Vivid Sydney 2022 won in the Achievement (National) category for Best Public Event 2022.
2023 Artistic Direction
Vivid Sydney, Naturally
We have come through dark days together; we have reconnected, reenergised and rediscovered. We have walked into the light and found joy, happiness and each other.
Now is the time to keep moving forward, to maintain the momentum, to leave no one behind. To protect what we truly cherish and ensure it endures. To create moments of wonder that bring us together and shine the spotlight on what really matters — connection, authenticity, love, nature.
Through nature we connect with our inner selves and find kindred souls. We gain an understanding of our place in the world and the importance of protecting it. Through nature we discover creativity, inspiration and understanding.
Fuelling our imagination, nature has long been a source of creativity. Creatives imitate the design patterns of nature, writers describe its beauty and scientists try to solve its mysteries. It teaches us, soothes and heals us — helps us to be optimistic and remain open to the unknown. Nature evokes awe, emotion and hope — makes us strive to be better, embrace diversity and think differently.
Nature provides a sense of discovery, a celebration of authenticity, an invitation to connect, a chance to create…experiences we can share at Vivid Sydney.
Vivid Sydney provides a unique opportunity to create in one of the world’s most beautiful natural and urban environments, to celebrate the natural wonder and diversity that is Sydney and our planet through creativity, technology and innovation — to be part of the awe-inspiring global event that is Vivid Sydney.
Through light, music, ideas and food, we invite you to be part of this truly universal experience that strives to change hearts and minds, to honour difference and to protect our world.
Natural beauty, natural brilliance, natural wonder.
Vivid Sydney, naturally.
Meet the rest of the Vivid Sydney team here.