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Arts

Drone technology is providing new possibilities for artistic expression.

Case Study: Drones are providing new avenues of expression, through choreographed light shows and performances.

Lucie In the Sky

Six dancers. Five drones. Endless emotions.

In this ambitious new work, the Australasian Dance Collective brings art and technology together in a world-first project. Lucie In the Sky will see micro-drones choreographed using human movement patterns to emulate emotions and personalities - inviting the audience into a world where humanity and technology share vulnerabilities, hopes and fears.

Complex relationships between humans and technology are thrust into the spotlight, as Lucie In the Sky explores the balance of power and our deep-seated need for each other. Peers. Companions. Friends. Foes. How do humans respond?

In addition to the increasingly popular drone light shows around the world, contemporary stage performances are a step towards drone use becoming more common in the arts. This showcases drones and tells a powerful story about their role in our future.

Lucie In the Sky pushes the boundary of performances using drones that are operated safely within 30m of the audience, and in compliance with Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) obligations.

Lucie In the Sky had its world premiere in May 2023 at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC), including special Insight Matinee performances created for school students and young dancers to deepen their connection to the performance.

Lucie In the Sky was supported by the Australian Government and developed in conjunction with a significant research and education program and delivered in partnership with ADC, World of Drones Education and Australian National University’s School of Cybernetics.

Lucie In the Sky will be presented in Canberra as part of the Uncharted Territory festival. Running from 7-16 July, artists, entrepreneurs and researchers will intersect, showcasing uncharted territories in innovation, art and science.

More information about Lucie In the Sky can be found on the Australasian Dance Collective website.

Image credit: Lucie In the Sky, 2023. Photography: David Kelly.
Image credit: Lucie In the Sky, 2023. Photography: David Kelly.
Video credit: Lucie In the Sky, Canberra Theatre Centre, 2023.

Moombaki

Drone light show over a lake.
Image credit: Ilona McGuire, Moombaki, 2021. Commissioned by Fremantle Biennale for CROSSING 21. Image courtesy Fremantle Biennale and the artist. Photography: Duncan Wright.

Moombaki (where the river meets the sky) is a spectacle of light, movement and sound, re-creating the Whadjuk Nyoongar Country stories for all Australians to experience. Moombaki is the brainchild of Ilona McGuire, using new technology to tell ancient Whadjuk Nyoongar stories.

In 2021, Moombaki featured across 8 nights and 3 locations, firstly, during the Fremantle Biennale program in Walyalup (Fremantle) and then Dyoondalup (Attadale) and Derbal Nara (Coogee Beach). Moombaki highlighted a series of interconnected stories through 160 drones taking flight over the bilya (river) and wardan (ocean).

Video credit: Ilona McGuire, Moombaki, 2021. Commissioned by Fremantle Biennale for CROSSING 21. Image courtesy Fremantle Biennale and the artist.

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Read more

Other uses of drones in Australia
Figure of Goods delivery
How are drones being used in Australia?

Goods delivery

Figure of Remote health
How are drones being used in Australia?

Remote health

Figure of Farming
How are drones being used in Australia?

Farming

Figure of Research and development
How are drones being used in Australia?

Research and development

Figure of Fire and rescue
How are drones being used in Australia?

Fire and rescue

Figure of Disaster relief
How are drones being used in Australia?

Disaster relief

Figure of Education and training
How are drones being used in Australia?

Education and training

Figure of Environmental management
How are drones being used in Australia?

Environmental management