Mona, Mofo, Dark Mofo


In less than eight years, the Mu­seum of Old and New Art (Mona) has grown from an idio­syn­cratic art gallery on the out­skirts of Ho­bart to an in­ter­na­tion­ally cel­e­brated and mul­ti­faceted cul­tural mar­vel. Un­der the spir­i­tual di­rec­tor­ship of David Walsh it has set the heart­beat of Tas­ma­nian cre­ative life, at­tract­ing hun­dreds of thou­sands of vis­i­tors from around the state and across the seas to its ex­hi­bi­tions, per­for­mances and var­i­ous com­mis­sioned works.

Over the past year, the Mona gallery hosted the ac­claimed trav­el­ling ex­hi­bi­tion The Mu­seum of Ev­ery­thing, as well as On the Ori­gin of Art and Zero, and has opened a new wing, Pharos. Its Jan­u­ary fes­ti­val of mu­sic and art, MONA FOMA (aka Mofo), pre­sented Go­tye’s trib­ute to Jean-Jac­ques Per­rey, the Tas­ma­nian Sym­phony Orches­tra’s live col­lab­o­ra­tion with Vi­o­lent Femmes, Cana­dian alt-rock­ers God­speed You! Black Em­peror, Brian Jack­son and the South­ern Gospel Choir, Thembi Sod­dell, Austin Buck­ett, Elec­tric Fields, Sonya Lif­s­chitz per­form­ing Robert David­son’s Stalin’s Pi­ano, and much more.

Dark Mofo, its win­ter fes­ti­val, brought to Tas­ma­nia acts in­clud­ing Lau­rie An­der­son, Jag­war Ma, Ein­stürzende Neubauten, Chrysta Bell, Tim Minchin, Mar­lon Wil­liams, Archie Roach and Tid­das, while pre­sent­ing a feast of vis­ual and per­form­ing arts such as the re­mark­able Un­der the Bi­tu­men the Artist by Mike Parr.

The breadth of work pre­sented over the past year un­der the var­i­ous Mona ban­ners is too great to list here let alone de­scribe. Suf­fice to say, the com­bi­na­tion of fes­ti­vals, events, gal­leries and works has trans­formed the state and en­riched the na­tion.

The Monthly

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