Melbourne's summer of art is in full swing: the NGV's blockbuster paying tribute to street art legends Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat is drawing massive crowds, stepping back in time to connect with New York in the '80s. There's plenty else to see around the city, including ACCA's fascinating and futuristic Feedback Loops as well as the always brilliant exhibition celebrating the Koorie Art Show.
Melbourne's best exhibitions in January
After the success of a joint exhibition of work by Andy Warhol and Ai Weiwei in 2016, the NGV is bringing together another pair of art legends for its 2019/20 summer blockbuster. Who doesn't love a two-for-one deal? Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat's careers burned bright and fast in the 1980s, rocking the New York art establishment.
The real, the fictive and the speculative roll together as one in this exhibition that asks six Australian and international artists to sample and reinterpret real and imagined characters and events from their past and present in order to understand and speculate upon the feature.
The Koorie Art Show is the largest Indigenous art prize in Victoria, featuring artists at the very start of their career alongside long-standing arts leaders. Each year, the Koorie Heritage Trust's Federation Square Gallery hosts a free exhibition of every entry, offering a brilliant opportunity to see the richness of Indigenous art in the 21st century.
Nature has always played a key role at Heide. Originally six hectares of rundown farmland on the outskirts of Melbourne, over almost 50 years art lovers John and Sunday Reed transformed the site into a haven for artists such as Sidney Nolan and Albert Tucker. Now artists Wona Bae and Charlie Lawler are honouring that connection, creating site-specific installations that respond to the modernist building Heide II.
Even if you don't know his name, you're almost certainly familiar with Brian Donnelly's (aka Kaws) larger-than-life sculptures and paintings. Kaws take icons from cartoons and pop culture and reimagines them in vulnerable and unexpected situations.
The stories of three queer Iranian diasporas, Payam, Shyla and Shaya, are told in this exhibition that explores the taboo of being LGBTQIA in Iranian communities. Dancer Tara Jade Samaya is at the centre of three video installations that question what it means to be a queer voice in a society that actively represses those voices.
Multimedia artists including Lu Yang, Howie Lee and Alex Wang will combine immersive gaming environments, traditional Chinese music, digital avatars and civic ethics in a series of boundary-pushing works and discussions for the Sinofuturists program, part of Asia TOPA 2020.
It’s pretty common to get caught in the rain while walking around Melbourne. What’s less common is to get caught in the rain while walking around indoors in Melbourne – and even weirder when you realise that the rain is inexplicably falling everywhere except on you. This August Melbourne will be the first city in the southern hemisphere to host ‘Rain Room’, an immersive artwork by London-based collective Random International.
Iranian-born, New York-based artist and filmmaker Shirin Neshat has been exploring the relationship between women, identity and Islam for more than 20 years. In Dreamers, her trilogy of black and white video installations, Neshat examines the world of the subconscious from the perspective of three women.
The whimsical, warped and often woven worlds of Louise Weaver are at Buxton Contemporary this summer. Between Appearances: the Art of Louise Weaver draws together three decades of the artist’s work and peers into her constant exploration of growth, transformation and the natural world.
Looking to get outside the gallery?
Sure, street art covers almost every nook and cranny of our creative, colourful city, but there are more highly concentrated clusters than others. These are the street art hotspots that any self-respecting 'grammer should be snapping: the city's ten best street mural hotspots, in all their spray-painted laneway glory.