The Return of Art in the Dark

This is the third year Drus Dryden, aka Sensitive Boyfriend, has pitched a project for Art in the Dark and the first time he’s been successful. Dryden believed the nocturnal installation art event that lights up Ponsonby’s Western Park every November was getting too popular, so last year, he decided it could do with a respite from the crowds. He proposed a walled-off room open to the heavens where punters could have a quiet lie-down peering at the stars. It didn’t fly. This year, he’s joining the throngs, enlisting his friend “Dancing Nic” Boyce to boogie through the crowd in a “spacesuit”, holding a balloon, while he follows along blasting music.

The work is called Moon Balloon and was inspired by a balloon Dryden made for a party by implanting glowing LEDs in an oversized balloon — one of his many clever design ideas. By day, Sensitive Boyfriend peddles printed pillowcases, politician head-chopping blocks and other witty gifts online.

The artists involved in Art in the Dark are a cordial bunch: when Craig Neilson heard about the concept, he contributed the bizarre black costume Dryden is wearing — boots, bubble helmet and all. It’s actually a 1960s diving suit from a decommissioned frigate.

Art in the Dark: Western Park, November 13-16. artinthedark.co.nz

Photo by Stephen Langdon.