The iconic Hollywood Hotel will introduce Surry Hills as the newest precinct for this year’s Vivid Sydney festival, with design, animation and visual effects house Heckler curating ‘Iconicity’ – a three weeks visual extravaganza celebrating iconic Australian and international people, art and music.
Tucked away in the labyrinth streets of Surry Hills, the famous Hollywood Hotel’s art deco stylings and the soft curved edges of its facade, provides the perfect canvas for Heckler’s show which will feature everything from Queen Elizabeth II and Kate Moss to iconically Australian Mambo designs.
Heckler, as the key curators of the project, have worked alongside Radio Velvet and Astral Projekts, to licence existing artworks and re-imagine them with animation which will be projected onto the facade of the Hollywood Hotel.
Heckler co-founder and executive producer Will Alexander said: “The Hollywood is synonymous as a venue that champions the arts and important social issues.”
“We’ve had a strong connection to the Hollywood for many years and are delighted to support our local arts and creative community and reflect its status in the wider Sydney audience, using state of the art projections that celebrate iconic women, art and cultural icons.”
50 Iconic Women – 24 to 30 May
‘50 Iconic Women’ kicks off the first week of Vivid at the Hollywood showcasing 50 images of influential women by renowned British photographer Terry O’Neill.
The exhibition arrives in Sydney after opening on International Women’s Day in Melbourne.
The candid pictures of Kate Moss, Brigitte Bardot, Amy Winehouse and Queen Elizabeth II, amongst others, are creatively displayed as a montage of distinctive artworks by local female artists George Rose, Lauren Carney, Samantha Darling and Justine McAllister.
Heckler, which is using an all-female team to animate the 50 icons, is also inducting a 51st woman to the list with a bespoke projection of Hollywood Hotel’s 89-year-old owner Doris Goddard.
For much of her career Doris acted, including playing a Russian spy in the 1956 film ‘The Iron Petticoat’ alongside Katharine Hepburn and Bob Hope and appeared in cabaret around the world.
Returning to Australia she bought the Hollywood in 1977 becoming the first female publican in New South Wales.
Since then the hotel on Foster St, Surry Hills has embraced the local arts and entertainment community and was one of the first public venues to support the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras.
Alexander, who has been friends with Doris for many years, added: “Doris has been the beating heart of the Hollywood for the past four decades.
“Her support of arts and the LGBTIQ+ community have made her something of a cultural icon around Surry Hills and it’s only right that she’s recognised alongside 50 of the most iconic women around the world. Heckler is proud to be able to recognise Doris’ contribution to the city during Vivid.”
Iconically Australian – 31 May to 6 June
The work of Reg Mombassa, known for his famous Mambo designs, features in the second week at the Hollywood called ‘Iconically Australian’.
Showcasing three existing artworks as well as work from his upcoming June exhibition on the rise of artificial intelligence and its likelihood of inseminating humans, the founding member of Mental As Anything will also perform at the Hollywood with his band Dog Trumpet on 31 May to open his show.
Cultural Icons – 7 to 15 June
The final week, ‘Cultural Icons’, features designs from Heckler’s executive creative director Luca Ionescu, who’s renowned for his logo and bespoke typography.
Boasting one of the most impressive lists of achievements in the Australian design and arts scene over the past twenty years, Luca is known for creating the branding for Baz Luhrmann hit film ‘The Great Gatsby’.
This series of works will focus on re-imagined cultural icons such as the Star Wars Storm Trooper.
In addition over the three weeks there will be a ‘Homage to Hollywood’ with performances by some of Sydney’s best and iconic female impersonators every Saturday night, culminating in a special finale featuring the iconic legend Carlotta.