CollaborOCEANS ‘Kingdom of Coral’ Lighting of the Sails of the Sydney Opera House

Sydney Opera House Sails

Sydney Opera House, Sydney NSW, Australia

Starts   2021-06-08, 05:00 PM (AEST)
Ends     2021-06-09, 12:00 AM (AEST)

Organized by CollaborOceans

World Ocean Day CollaborOCEANS initiative of lighting up the Sails of Sydney Opera House with Valerie Taylor ‘Queen of the Oceans’ – marine adventurer, pioneering conservationist and artist.

This World Ocean Day on 8 June, CollaborOCEANS ‘KINGDOM OF CORAL’ joins with Exhibition Patron Valerie Taylor to promote her conservation message that ‘Our marine world is a precious gift’.

For 2021, World Ocean Day is raising awareness of and support for the global movement to protect at least 30% of the world’s lands, waters and ocean by 2030 (30×30).  Safeguarding at least 30% through a network of highly protected areas can help us to regain a healthy ocean and climate.

At exactly 5:10pm on 8 July 2021, Valerie Taylor will have the privilege to call the switch to light up the CollaborOCEANS ‘KINGDOM OF CORAL’ exhibition on the emblematic Sails of the Sydney Opera House.  Australians will get to enjoy Valerie’s illustrations from her private collection magically brought to life though animation for this special day to celebrate our seas globally.

This World Ocean Day we want to celebrate our natural marine wonders through sharing artistic imagery on the Sails of the Sydney Opera House at the water’s edge.  Who better to choose for her exquisite watercolour paintings than our own living wonder Valerie Taylor, Australia’s ‘QUEEN OF THE OCEAN’?

Valerie Taylor is a trailblazer for marine protection zones having won protection for many places on the Great Barrier Reef before it was given World Heritage status.  It was for this early conservation action that she received the honour of the “ORDER OF THE GOLDEN ARK” by Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands.


One of these ‘creatives’ is pioneering marine conservationist and global icon Valerie Taylor AM – who is better known in front of a camera than behind a paint brush.  The Sails will light up with her enchanting marine underwater illustrations, depicting an adventurous ‘Mermaid’ named Melody who is a courageous marine life guardian.

Other ‘creatives’ whose works will be seen lighting up the Sails include:

  • CollaborOCEANS founder and abstract ocean artist Timothy Johnston
  • The Archibald 2019 Finalist Blak Douglas, a Dhungatti man, who has contributed a vibrant whale mural
  • Internationally known artist James Peter Henry, whose juxtaposition of patterns is seen in his piece the ‘Great Barrier Reef’
  • Encounters with Green Sea Turtles by award winning ocean photographer and Cannon Ambassador Charlotte Piho
  • An intimate shot of ‘Migaloo’, the most well-known white humpback whale in Australia and the world, by Craig Parry the multi-award-winning ocean photographer
  • Hayley Ballie’s magnificent ‘Lion Fish’ from the paradise reefs of Lord Howe Island
  • And on centre-stage on the Sails – Sam Fricker, Tic Tok influencer and Australian diving hopeful for the Japan Olympics, diving across the Sails to share his clear message ‘DIVE INTO CLEAN OCEANS’, knowing young people have a crucial role to play in participating in a sustainable future with the 2025 goal of removing all single-use plastics in Australia.


Valerie Taylor will receive the ‘Queen of the Sharks Award’ at the switching on of the Sails.  This award is presented to Valerie as an industry leader whose contributions to the innovation of marine science as well as entertainment has changed the industry for the better.  This award follows Valerie’s new documentary being officially selected for the 2021 Sundance Film Festival in the World Cinema Documentary Competition section.  ‘PLAYING WITH SHARKS’ is a feature documentary from director Sally Aitken and producer Bettina Dalton, and is the first Australian feature to win.  We go on a journey of new understandings about shark species through Valerie’s life at sea, from fear to respect and awe of these complex, often misunderstood creatures who need our protection and attention on this World Ocean Day.

Photo credit: Mentored Media
Organized By

Sydney Opera House, Sydney NSW, Australia

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