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Design

Is Sydney’s Opera House a Billboard?

After a horse race ad was projected onto the structure’s iconic roof earlier this week, protestors took to the streets in objection to the commodification of their beloved building.
The Opera House has hosted immersive light projections on its facade in the past (a show from 2016 is seen above), so when Opera House CEO LouiseHerron originally turned down Racing NSW’s request, she was only enforcing guidelines that forbids slogans, corporate identities, or text on its sails “unless for a specific artistic purpose in relation to Sydney Opera House.”
The Opera House has hosted immersive light projections on its facade in the past (a show from 2016 is seen above), so when Opera House CEO LouiseHerron originally turned down Racing NSW’s request, she was only enforcing guidelines that forbids slogans, corporate identities, or text on its sails “unless for a specific artistic purpose in relation to Sydney Opera House.”Jason Reed/Reuters

If you had been in Sydney on Tuesday night wandering by the Harbour Bridge, you would have looked across Circular Quay and noticed something unusual about the Opera House: its white sails were... not white.

Instead, they were covered by a light projection of the barrier draw for the Everest Cup, one of Sydney’s biggest horse races and the world’s “richest turf horse race,” according to their website. Cloaked in checkered jockey’s colors that were interspersed with the logo of the Cup, the internationally-admired landmark looked like a court jester’s uniform.