Art & Design

Sydney Contemporary Is An Explosion Of Art And Here’s Why You Need To Go

By Sammy Preston
13th Sep 2018

OK, so you’ve probably seen the shiny plastic mould of Donald Trump’s head rising out of the boardwalk down at Barangaroo. The sculpture (which, side note, definitely has more than hair than the real deal IMO), is a part of Sydney Contemporary—a gargantuan four-day-long art extravaganza featuring galleries and artists from all over Australia and the rest of the world.

The main event is hosted at Carriageworks and has opened up to the public today with art aplenty for you to feast your eyes upon.

The art fair draws all the baller art collectors of the world, hoping to shop til they drop and snap up some supreme Australian talent (cannot confirm if you’ll see Bey and Jay). For those of us not quite ready to lay down all our savings on the next big thing, there is A LOT to see and eat and experience just the same.  

Installation Contemporary is a full program of large-scale installations set up in various spots throughout the fair. Our faves include New Zealand Artist Robert Jahnke’s mesmerising neon mirrors, a towering four-metre high red, white and blue figure by late French artist Jean Dubuffet, and Patricia Piccinini's eerie field of white ceramic flowers.

You’ll want to catch Taiwanese artist River Lin’s offer to “Wash away your regrets, your fears and your imperfections” in a one-on-one purification slash art performance slash therapy. Then there’s Hossein Ghaemi’s delightful ode to cats and the kitty psyche: step into a rainbow room filled with cat masks, cat toys and more.

As you wander through the 80 galleries on show, you’re going to find works by very excellent Australian artists like Archibald Prize winners Ben Quilty and Fiona Lowry, as well as Reko Rennie, Tony Albert, and Janet Lawrence. British heavyweights Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin will also be there.

There are panel discussions on art and design trends, a Beluga Vodka bar, a wine bar by Handpicked Wines, and a pop-up dim sum restaurant led by dumpling master Eric Koh of Mr. Wong and Queen Chow.

The Details

What: Sydney Contemporary
When: September 13 – 16
Where: Carriageworks
Tickets: Head here

Keen for more art? Here are all the other exhibitions you *need* to go see this month. 

Image credit: Jacquie Manning. 

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