One of the most impressive creatures to stalk Ballarat’s streets during the coming White Night Festival will be the White Knight Messenger.
Standing at almost five metres tall and operated by eight puppeteers, the winged messenger might look as though it’s an armoured behemoth, but actually weighs just 15 kilograms, says its designer Joe Blanck.
Mr Blanck, who has a long career as a visual and scenic artist and has his business A Blanck Canvas in Docklands, says the White Knight Messenger will soar above Ballarat’s streets courtesy of a counterweight and boom arm system operated by four of the puppeteers.
It's important to remember the diversity that exists in our countryJoe Blanck
The interior of the White Knight is lit by multicoloured and changing LED lights. Messages of peace will project on its outspread wings and different human faces will appear on the cowled head of the messenger as quotations from John Lennon or Bob Marley, The Bible or the Koran are broadcast to those watching.
“Each performance runs for 45 minutes,” says Mr Blanck.
“The Knight delivers 15 messages from world and religious leaders about peace and love. It inspires hope and compassion. There’s a lot going on in the world right now, and it’s important to remember the diversity that exists in our country, that we’re all one.”