The Gertrude Street Light Projection Festival is on again, at, if you haven’t been paying attention Gertrude St in Fitzroy. This fantastic annual event has been held each Melbourne Winter since 2008. I first attended it two-years ago and remember being astounded that the entire event was completely not-for-profit, ran entirely by volunteers. The organisers, sponsors (City of Yarra, Bendigo Bank, Nelson Alexander etc) and Gertrude traders all need commending for having the foresight to begin such an event but also continue it as a Melbourne tradition.
If I had to leave you with a 3-2-1, the votes would fall as follows (sincere apologies to the artists, I found it difficult to track down who did what. If anyone knows these answers please reply below so I can make amendments to the following write-up) ;
3-Votes: Alley Fish – Perhaps because of its positioning on the ground, or the contrast between light and dark, or just the sheer calming image of water and fish this projection attracted more attention and “ohhs” and “ahhs” then any of the other works. A great idea that had me dreaming of a Tahitian thatched hut with a glass bottom floor.
2-Votes: Commission Flat Projection – Large, grande and visually arresting. Has a variety of patterns which cycle through including one that provokes memories of “Batman Forever.” That’s a little unfortunate but the gratuitous purple and large comic book styled typo sure looked impressive.
1-Vote: Pop-culture stew – There’s a projector toward Smith St in the last alley on the left that cycles through a large variety of Pop identities with a little Banksy humour mixed to good effect.
Hopefully the future is bright for this little gem of a festival. It would be great to see it garner better sponsorship and expand its territory along Langridge St and into Little Oxford St. There it could take advantage of giant, brick factory and residential facades with darker street lighting and that quirky, stylised, street art found throughout pockets of Fitzroy.
If you need some artistic inspiration or want to reconnect with a street icon of inner Melbourne, get along to the Gertrude St Projection Festival. At the very least you’ll find a great coffee or a tasty beer.