MARDI GRAS UN­VEILS TOWERING ART IN­STAL­LA­TION TO CEL­E­BRATE 40 YEARS OF PROTEST, LOVE AND EQUAL­ITY

Q Magazine - - Q Comment -

Sun­day 24 June 2018 marked the his­toric 40th an­niver­sary of the first ever Syd­ney Gay and Les­bian Mardi Gras cel­e­bra­tion turned protest. To cel­e­brate Syd­ney Gay and Les­bian Mardi Gras and City of Syd­ney to­day un­veiled 40 Years of Love, a vi­brant in­flat­able art in­stal­la­tion in the heart of Syd­ney's LGBTQI dis­trict, Tay­lor Square.

De­signed by Mau­rice Gold­berg and Matthew Aber­line, 40 Years of Love is a cel­e­bra­tion of 40 years of Mardi Gras and uses sym­bols to rep­re­sent the five themes of re­pres­sion, ad­ver­sity, free­dom, di­ver­sity and love.

The project rep­re­sents his­toric Mardi Gras con­cepts such as pub­lic protest, joy­ous cel­e­bra­tion, com­mu­nity ac­ti­va­tion and en­gage­ment and in­cor­po­rates many colours and shapes to ex­press that Mardi Gras is not a sin­gu­lar con­cept, but a mix­ture of di­verse ideas, peo­ple, his­to­ries, pol­i­tics and ex­pres­sions.

The in­stal­la­tion in­te­grates with the ex­ist­ing Tay­lor Square ar­chi­tec­ture, ris­ing above the iconic grass is­land and wa­ter foun­tain. The 360-de­gree work trans­forms the space into a light-filled out­door pavil­ion so vis­i­tors are in­vited to walk through and ex­plore its' var­i­ous im­ages and sym­bols from dif­fer­ent per­spec­tives.

“We were strug­gling to de­scribe a sin­gu­lar im­age to de­scribe the his­tory of Mardi Gras. It's so var­ied, po­lit­i­cal, sex­ual, and the his­tory of it is so com­pli­cated, so rather than try­ing to find a sin­gu­lar item, we de­cided to make a mi­cro­cosm of what Mardi Gras is about – the good stuff, the bad stuff, and the cel­e­bra­tion,” said

Aber­line,

“It'll be nine me­tres high at its high­est point above the ground,” Gold­berg added. “That's higher than a three­storey build­ing. We want peo­ple to no­tice this – it's a big, sassy, loud, un­de­ni­ably in-your-face in­stal­la­tion.”

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