Games Memories - Public Art

Couple walking Photo: PK Robbins Every day - ANZ Stadium
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Games Memories consists of a V-shaped forest of 480 poles, layed out at the eastern end of Olympic Plaza. Unashamedly nostalgic, it captures many of the elements that made the Games special to the athletes, volunteers, spectators in the stands and the billions watching or listening around the world.

This is primarily a permanent tribute to the volunteers who made the Sydney 2000 Olympic and Paralympic Games such a magnificent occasion. The overwhelming enthusiasm and team spirit of the volunteers inspired all those who attended the Games.

Games Memories was inspired by Stonehenge, indigenous meeting places and the existing form and detail of Sydney Olympic Park. The forest of poles represents the densely packed crowds that inhabited Sydney Olympic Park in September 2000. The random distribution of the poles and their varying heights is symbolic of the way that people randomly clustered across Olympic Plaza and Olympic Boulevard during the Games.Nearly 300 poles list the names of the 74,000 Olympic and Paralympic Volunteers who contributed their time and energy to these events. The poles have stainless steel ‘shields’, each accommodating 250 names. Follow the path of the poles to discover the names of those who helped stage the “best Games ever”. The volunteer walk is set out alphabetically by surname from the Olympic Boulevard end of the forest through to ANZ Stadium.

An additional 50 special poles in the forest interpret the spectator experience of the Games.

These poles present Games information in an entertaining and innovative way, using graphics, audio and video, tactile finishes, humour, light and movement. Gold-winning performances in the long jump and triple jump are depicted alongside replicas of the Olympic and Paralympic medals. Other poles celebrate the lighting of the Games Cauldron, retrace the journey of the Olympic torch, show world records set during the games and remember the Olympic and Paralympic mascots. Three of the poles have been painted by Donny Woolagoodja - a prominent indigenous artist.

At the heart of the project is a multimedia presentation pod, a canopy-shaped structure comprising 12 plasma screens, displaying an exciting program which recalls the scale and spectacle of the Games. The 40 minute program features opening and closing ceremonies, athletes, crowds, and highlights from many Olympic and Paralympic finals. Two smaller satellite installations are located at the Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Centre and at Allphones Arena. Based on a similar design to the multimedia pod in the main installation, they incorporate plasma screens and seating for viewers. Each satellite features a 20 minute audio-visual program based on the sports held at the adjacent venue. The project was launched by the Premier, The Hon. Bob Carr MLA, on 15 September 2002 - the second anniversary of the Olympic Games Opening Ceremony.

Location: ANZ Stadium forecourt near the junction of Olympic Boulevard and Dawn Fraser Avenue; Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Centre and Allphones Arena
Artist/Designer: Tony Caro Architecture (Architects) in collaboration with Root Projects Australia, Donny Woollagoodja (Artist for 3 Poles), Emery Vincent Design (Graphic Design), Wax Sound and Media (Multi-Media Programs)

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