The Sydney Opera House’s pioneering festival of graphic art, storytelling, animation and music continues to explore the present and create the future.
GRAPHIC is the Sydney Opera House’s annual showcase of the world’s leading artists in print, pixel and pop. It’s where music, comics, animation, illustration and gaming collide to create something new. Described as a Comic-Con for the arts, GRAPHIC is “the smartest, wisest, most cutting-edge festival in celebration of narrative literature and its intersection with culture in the world,” according to former guest Neil Gaiman.
GRAPHIC underlines the Opera House’s commitment to being a catalyst for the creation and presentation of new work of scale and ambition. Featured artists have included Gaiman, Dr George Miller, Art Spiegelman, Shaun Tan and Jim Woodring, together with musicians Gotye, Fat Freddy’s Drop, The Cinematic Orchestra, Ludovico Einaudi and others.
It has been a festival rich in remarkable moments, from the first GRAPHIC in 2010, when the anime classic Akira screened with a live score created and performed by Australian band Regurgitator, to the 2013 debut of Australian breakthrough star Gotye’s Grammy-winning album Making Mirrors to filmmaker George Miller and the creative team behind Mad Max: Fury Road talking through their storyboards in 2015.
GRAPHIC is also a festival with a long tail. For 2013’s Gotye: An Animated Album preview, the Sydney Opera House commissioned some of Australia’s most talented animators to bring the album to life, including Rubber House, Lucinda Schreiber, Mechanical Apple and PictureDRIFT. This bespoke visual content was subsequently performed around the world as Gotye’s standard global live show. Pulitzer Prize winner Art Spiegelman’s first Australian appearance, the GRAPHIC-commissioned 2013 performance Wordless! was subsequently performed at BAM, UC Berkeley, UCLA, George Washington University and the Institute of Contemporary Art.
The festival, which also includes workshops, talks and panel discussions on diverse areas of graphic arts, runs over two-to-three days each year at the Sydney Opera House.
Created by Sam Doust and the
Sydney Opera House GCI Team