Vivid Sydney at Chatswood 2019

Ether Elm 600 x 400

Ether Elm

Artists: Josh Greenhalgh (AU), Albert Ma (AU), Caleb Charles (AU), Anz Elizabeth Easaw (IN) & Luke Hespanhol (BR/AU)

Collaborator: Design Lab, The University of Sydney (Australia)

Lerner and Loewe’s classic lyric I Talk to the trees… But they don’t listen to me… gets a 2019 reprise when nature and technology become one at Vivid Sydney at Chatswood. Bond with the environment by talking to one of Chatswood’s majestic elm trees. This time, the tree does listen to you, and responds. Use your voice to control strobes of light illuminating its mighty branches.

Ether Elm is a fun, interactive installation in Chatswood Mall that combines the industrial aesthetic of space age technology with the inspiration and joy evoked through colour and sound. Join in a creative bonding experience together with your friends, family and fellow festival goers. Sing, shout, laugh, talk and whisper to produce engaging light sequences generated by each different pattern of tone.

Ether Elm is inspired by futuristic chrome spaceships found in science fiction of the 1950s to 1960s. Using colours from psychedelic light shows made popular by bands such as Pink Floyd, a collective of emerging artists and designers from the University of Sydney have created this engaging installation to explore the relationships between humans, technology and nature.

Ether Elm enhances local flora in Chatswood, allowing visitors and local musicians to transfer their vocal input into a beautiful array of travelling light that flows from the microphone into the soil, up through the tree trunk and out through rods hanging from the tree branches.

This light movement represents the effect we have on the environment around us, reminding us that what we give to the world is given back to us.


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