Art & Design

Everything Worth Seeing At White Night This Year

By Julia Hammond
14th Feb 2017


White Night is getting bigger and bigger each year so planning the perfect outing is becoming rather time-consuming. Luckily we’ve put in the hard yards for you and pulled out the best bits from each precinct this year.

Flames And Fantasy Precinct

The Pyrophone Juggernaut

Definitely on the must-see list is the largest hand-operated fire organ in the world. The operative word here being fire. This huge industrial style instrument will be erupting in flames and percussion all night long.

Sonic Light Bubble

After all that fiery excitement you’ll need something a little quieter. This interactive installation responds with lights and sounds when you touch it. All fans of shiny things rejoice because this bubble is basically your dream come true.

First Peoples

A night about Melbourne wouldn’t be complete without the story of Aboriginal Victoria. This exhibition celebrates the history, culture and achievements of the Koorie community from Creation to today.

Precipitation And Enlightenment Precinct

Lonsdale Lounge Cinema

The key to a great White Night is finding a balance between excitement and relaxation. Chill out with a few short films, documentaries and animations on Lonsdale Street. Family friendly films are showing 7-11pm and later in the evening the ratings go higher than PG.

Rebel Elders

Getting older is anxiety inducing to say the least, but it doesn’t have to be. Get inspired by adrenaline seeking oldies driving racecars, getting tattooed and flying around on the trapeze in this video projection down Rainbow Alley. Your twilight years have never seemed so enticing.

Purple Rain

2016 spelled the end for many a celebrity icon, but this installation proves their memory is alive and well. In an ode to one of Prince’s most famous works this artwork invites you to borrow a translucent umbrella and take a stroll through the literal purple rain.

Swing Central Precinct

Fractured Fairytales

Here’s one for the kids and the big kids at heart. Fairytales everyone will recognise take on ‘fractured’ visual twists along Flinders St to entertain young and old minds alike. Don’t just stop at one either as they’ll be projected onto buildings from The Forum Theatre across to Chapter House.

Flash Back

Explore the changing face of Australia with archival footage from the 1940s-80s at ACMI. A mash-up of videos takes you through the subcultures, fashions and music from each decade, showcasing everything from the teens of the 50s to the punk rockers of the 80s.

Video Game Mixtape

Take a trip back to the golden age of gaming. Before there were HD graphics, FPS and zombies there was a little thing called Mario Kart. This exhibition celebrates the best of video games past with 8-bit graphics, arcade machines and retro tunes inspired by game soundtracks.

Swing City

Break out your dancing shoes and practice those moves because from 7pm-7am on Collins St there’s a swinging party going on. Jive your way through big band music from the 30s, 40s and 50s. If the thought of dancing in public has you feeling like a jitterbug you’ll be pleased to hear there’s also crowd tuition and demonstrations to get you going.

Innocence Returned Precinct

Love This Way

As simple as it sounds, this is the perfect stop for the lovebirds out on White Night. Wander through Alexandra Gardens and you’ll find a neon arrow leading you down love’s path. What’s waiting at the other end we’ll keep a surprise.  

Herbum Follus

What’s 7 meters tall and green? Usually, it would be the Hulk but not on White Night. This year you can weave your way through a neon green forest of tall light up grass. Take a break and see the world from an ant’s perspective for once.

Ready to hit the streets? Take a look at the map of the precincts here so you can plot the best route.

Image credit: Simon Shiff for The Urban List

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