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WCC Events Manager Lauren Edney with artist Carla O'Brien

This Christmas, let it glow!

News Article Date: 
Monday, 30 November 2020

The Warrnambool City Council has added 16 neon sculptures to its permanent collection of Christmas decorations.

The lights were custom-made by artist Carla O’Brien, who worked with Council on the popular Solstice Searching event in June that saw neons hidden at popular locations throughout Warrnambool.

The city’s new sculptures were unveiled as part of “A Very Liebig Christmas” over the weekend, and will remain in place until after Christmas, giving everyone plenty of time to enjoy them.

They can be found in and around Liebig Street, with two installations at Cannon Hill too.

Ms O’Brien said that she was thrilled to be back in Warrnambool. 

“It was such a positive experience with the neon trail that we had over wintertime, so it was fantastic to come back and bring a different side of Christmas, something that’s completely unique,” she said.

“These are original pieces and Warrnambool is the first in the world to get them.

“I hope a lot of people come into the city, have a wander around and see everything.”

Ms O’Brien said that the artworks injected fun and excitement into the city while providing a COVID-safe activity for families.

“What’s so great about them is that you can take an amazing photo but you don’t have to touch them,” she said.

Warrnambool City Council Manager Events Lauren Edney said that Solstice Searching proved that the concept of neon sculptures that people could take their photo with was a popular one.

“We’re really excited to have Carla back because Solstice Searching was such a big hit and I think at that time of year, everyone was looking for something to do, and it was such a great, safe way to enjoy Warrnambool,” she said.

“And the great thing is that these lights are now part of the permanent Warrnambool City Council Christmas decorations so we’ll have them for the future as well.

“The beauty for us is that they are portable and they can be used with batteries as well. So we can move them around town in the future and really customise the look.

“It’s nice to do something like this that brings a bit of joy, especially after such a non-joyous year, so we’re just really excited to be able to put this on and have something that’s going for the whole month so everyone can get out and about and enjoy it.”

Carla O’Brien is a visual artist whose neon artworks have been showcased at the White Night festivals in Melbourne and Ballarat as well as the Burning Man Festival in the United States.

Pop star Katy Perry once published a photo with one of Ms O’Brien’s artworks on her Instagram page, with the post attracting more than 700,000 likes.


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