We’re moving into a data-based future, and if you’re feeling lost amongst a sea of numbers and graphs you can get yourself up to speed by heading to one of the Vivid Ideas sessions on data. Your Data Built Our Presentation investigates the digital trail we lead and how best to make use of the endless amounts of data available. You can then cap off your evening with Data Futures, which invites you to take park in a live experiment with real time data visualisation.

Design and creativity

At the LX.lab, we’re pretty interested in design-thinking for higher education, but design-thinking is everywhere now! You can hear about the benefits and processes involved in design-thinking from a panel of experts at Designing with People Powered Social Change, which will end with an audience Q&A session, so make a list of your burning questions. For a different perspective on creative processes, book into The Ethics of Creativity, which will bring together a group of artists to discuss how to consider and navigate ethical dilemmas.


Here’s one you can take the kids along to. Rhodes Creative is a program of workshops, activities and events, with opportunities to explore new technologies and meet robots (including a Human+Robot Friendship Ball). Delve even deeper into augmented and virtual reality at The Vivid World of Virtual Reality workshop, where you’ll learn about the tools you need to create your own VR or AR experience. Elsewhere, UTS FASS is collaborating with a group of organisations to create Hungry Birds – From Maths to Motion, a hands-on workshop combining paper engineering, mechanical movement and coding.

Social Justice

We hear about diversity all the time, and it’s certainly a big focus area for us here at UTS. Find out how to go from talk to action at Diversity in Practice, a panel that explores where we’re at and how to keep going forward to make the media and screen industry more inclusive. For political animals, Evolving Democracy brings together futurists, academics and professionals to discuss what democracy will look like in the future.


And of course, we’d be remiss to ignore the colourful spectacle of light installations that will soon be appearing. We’re especially excited for the contribution from UTS, Living Lights, which will be a ‘forest’ made from living, breathing algae. Accompanying this installation is the panel discussion Algae is the New Black, which features UTS academic Dr Mark Liu, and will shed some light on how this tiny aquatic plant could mean big things for our future.

The list of installations on display is huge and as well as the usual projections around Circular Quay, you can also see fantastical creatures at Barangaroo and Chatswood, a geometrical forest at the Botanic Gardens, carnival lights at Luna Park, an illuminated canopy of 1000 cranes in The Rocks, and the fabulously titled Mystery Gateau, a tribute for any Masterchef tragics out there.

This is just a small selection of what’s on offer, so head over to the Vivid website for more info and ticketing details.

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