The boffins behind Victoria University’s Skunk Control collective will light up White Night celebrations this Saturday when their installation, Altar to the Future, comes to life at St Paul’s Cathedral.

The VU engineers, scientists and educators create visually arresting installations that merge art and science.

The resulting interactive creations show science in action, underpinned by outreach and educational programs focusing on the art and science that underpins their creations.


A detail from ‘Altar to the Future’.

Formed in 2012, the group has shown its work as part of a number of Melbourne festivals and has exhibited as far afield as New Zealand and Portugal.

Its 2014 piece Pestilent Protrusions took out the People’s Choice award at the annual Gertrude Street Projection Festival.

Skunk Control founder Nick Athanasiou of VU’s College of Engineering & Science said science and art aren’t as oppositional as people often think, with both asking the big questions and many similarities in the way scientists and artists search, think and create.


Skunk Control’s Hariz Redzic, Nick Athanasiou and Simon Roberts.

Six metres high and created entirely by hand, Altar to the Future took three months to create and includes more than 600 flowers formed by more than 6000 individual petals and 12,000 LED lights.

Described as “a dream of a dream at the end of a corridor from which you don’t want to wake up”, the installation will be on show at St Paul’s Cathedral from 7pm-7am on Saturday, February 17.