Lights Set To Flick On For Vivid Sydney 2018
The giant inflatable puppet bends from her height of six metres and tenderly reaches her arms towards a small child standing before her on Sydney's harbour.
Marri Dyin, meaning Great Woman in the local indigenous language of the Eora people, will walk along Barangaroo each night as part of the 23-day Vivid Sydney festival kicking off on Friday.
Seven-year-old Abiageal Dwyer is one of the first children to come face-to-face with the puppet, which has an internal skeleton lit with multiple light bulbs causing it to glow.
"It was scary at first but then I got quite used to it," Abiageal told AAP on Wednesday.
Abiageal's mother Sinead says she takes her family of four to Vivid Sydney every year, with the lighting of the Sydney Opera House, Circular Quay and the Royal Botanical Gardens being highlights.
"I can't believe it has been on for 10 years now - it's one of the best things about Sydney in the winter," Sinead told AAP.
"There is so much more to it than just the lights - there is the music as well and the great gigs that are on and the ideas as well".
Marri Dyin's spokesman Scott Wright says he hopes the puppet will help normalise indigenous culture as being a part of Australia.
"What we are hoping to project is a time when people are not judged because of their race, gender or beliefs," Mr Wright said.
He said the enormous puppet will sit down, "chill out" and invite children to approach her a few times during the night walk at Barangaroo.
"We created this thing where she takes counsel with the children and the idea of that is she seeks the voice of the future and she wants to know what they think," Wright said.
Vivid Sydney officially starts with the unveiling of the light projections on the Sydney Opera House at 6pm on Friday and will end on June 16.
For the first time Luna Park, Government House, and Customs House will light up the night and installations will be extended at Taronga Zoo, Barangaroo, Chatswood, and the Royal Botanic Gardens.
For more info visit: vividsydney.com