sustainability in action: held right in the heart of Melbourne, the Sustainable Living Festival is a three-day celebration of innovation and creativity that fuses interactive displays, demonstrations, artwork, exhibits, design, films, multimedia and live performances. The event presents a rich program which increases the awareness of sustainability and creates new opportunities for individuals and groups for expression and communication. It provides a dynamic platform to showcase and celebrate life on our planet.
Its six 'living' themes, Think, Feel, Create, Design, Feast and Play, reflect the vision, passion, art, function, taste and thrill of sustainable living. “The Sustainable Living Festival is more than just a festival. In fact, it's a living-breathing example of sustainability in action. A place where you - the guest - generate the festival’s power, turn its waste into resources and transform thoughts into actions”, says Luke Taylor, the festival’s director.
play & listen: the festival brings together a wide range of activities for everybody interested in ‘flavouring sustainability’. From February 13th to 15th, 2004, the festival hosted over 100 exhibitors, 50 exhibiting artists, more than 40 performances on two stages and around 100 workshops/seminars in six themed out-loud spaces. Among these events were:
walk the talk: the Sustainable Living Festival acts as a gateway to sustainable living for all Australians. So they decided to practise what they preach:
- Richie's electric playground: a solar-powered, interactive music workshop where anyone could learn to play melody and harmony together with squeezy, twisty danceable instruments! Fascinating from both a musical and scientific perspective, this exciting project enabled people of all ages and abilities to participate in making music, regardless of experience.
- sounds: spread out over three days, the festival celebrated a diversity of performance with over 40 performers offering many different styles. You could hear rock from Dirty Lucy, Celtic dance music from The Borderers and the outrageous sounds of Totally Gourdegous. The latter are a bizarre band in which all the instruments are made from gourds. Penelope Swales plays gourd-guitar, Carl Pannuzzo plays gourd-djembe, gourd-shaker and gourd-guiro, Mal Webb plays upright fretless gourd-bass, mbira and a gourd bugle-ish thing and Andrew Clermont plays gourd-fiddle and gourd-mandolin. They combine to create a manic and… organic musical experience!
- the festival production office in East Melbourne is powered by solar energy, using a grid connected photovoltaic system. Eco-designed products, reused materials and reconditioned computers for the staff provide an example of a modern office that has minimal environmental impact and maximum social benefit.
- During the festival the ‘Waste Wise’ team had the task of separating paper, glass, cans, plastic, and food waste for compost and recycling. The Festival also provided a funky ‘Wash against Waste’ station for plates and cutlery from its food vendors. This kept the use of disposable food and drink containers to a minimum.
- Finally, the festival used green power for its energy needs. Promotional material including letterhead, brochures, programs and postcards used a waterless printing process, vegetable based inks, and were printed on post consumer and recycled waste paper.