Mervyn Rubuntja’s projection. Image courtesy of the Sydney Opera House

Badu Gili — meaning ‘water light’ in the language of the traditional owners of Bennelong Point, the Gadigal people — is a daily experience that explores ancient First Nations stories in a spectacular seven-minute projection. They illuminate the Opera House’s eastern Bennelong sail year-round at sunset and 9pm.

A celebration of the rich history and contemporary vibrancy of Australia’s First Nations culture, Badu Gili continues the traditions of Bennelong Point, formerly known as Tubowgule (‘where the knowledge waters meet’), a gathering place for community, ceremony and storytelling for thousands of years.

An important pillar of the Opera House’s year-round First Nations program, Badu Gili is an essential Sydney cultural experience for both visitors and the local community that aims to foster and celebrate a shared sense of belonging for all Australians.

This first refresh of Badu Gili traces songlines across shifting terrain, from the far corners of the Australian desert to the waters of the Torres Strait.

Curated by the Opera House’s Head of First Nations programming, Rhoda Roberts AO with the support of Yakkazoo, the projections weave together the work of the diverse voices of established artist and community leader Djambawa Marawili AM, vibrant watercolour painter Mervyn Rubuntja, internationally renowned artist and prestigious Telstra NATSIAA awards finalist Mabel Juli, painter, lecturer and traditional healer Patricia Ansell Dodds, ceramicist Penny Evans and emerging printmaker Aiona Tala Gaidan, with an original soundscape by Damian Robinson.

Badu Gili is a free experience best viewed from the top of the Monumental Steps.


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SOURCE: Sydney Opera House