Fun Things to Do This Summer in Melbourne
Fun Things to Do This Summer in Melbourne
Once again, Australia’s cultural capital delivers a stellar city-wide line-up this summer. And after the year we’ve had, we certainly deserve to enjoy some safe, physically distant fun. From ground-breaking exhibitions to alfresco cinemas and New year’s Eve feasts, there’s plenty to explore.
Treat this as your guide to everything you need to do before the end of summer.
Melbourne’s best summer events
1. NGV Triennial
Dec 19 2020 – Apr 18 2021
The hotly anticipated NGV Triennial will return this summer, with the gallery announcing the dates for the second edition of the colossal exhibition. The NGV Triennial will run from December 19 to April 18, 2021, showcasing 86 thought-provoking, eye-widening works from more than 100 artists. The best part? It’s free.
Until Jan 31 2021
The District Docklands is getting a glow-up as it launches Imaginaria – a magical “future play experience”. In layman’s terms, Melbourne, you’re getting a giant, glowing, otherworldy all-ages playground to explore this summer. Imaginaria will allow (let’s be honest, event-starved) Melburnians to explore fantastic custom-built, interactive structures like a giant inflatable bubble, glowing light maze, and a “cosmic abyss”. The whole installation features bespoke sound, light and even scents that are activated as guests explore the dreamscape.
3. Sidney Myer Free Concerts
Jan 29 2021 – Feb 10 2021
Some people like to go for a swim on a warm summer evening – and then some people like to listen to symphonies. If you’re the latter, then you’re in luck, because the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra is bringing back its free concerts at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl this summer – now in a socially distant way.
Until Feb 28 2021
Head down to the Yarra for Juniperlooza: a summer gin festival celebrating the herbaceous spirit. After a stint down river at the Boatbuilders Yard, Juniperlooza is back where it started at Pilgrim, just below Fed Square. This year the festival will be an all-summer affair, with Juniperlooza running for the duration of the season. There will be 70 gin labels from thirty different producers available to taste, with Pilgrim running interactive talk and taste sessions for gin enthusiasts.
Until Mar 8 2021
The NGV is bringing the largest ever exhibition of Tiwi art to Melbourne this November, showcasing 70 artists and nearly 300 works in Tiwi. The works presented in Tiwi date from 1911 right up to the present day, but don’t come expecting a chronological tour. Instead, the exhibition will present the works in the context of Tiwi art and culture, including their two primary cultural events: the pukumani (mourning) and kulama (coming of age) ceremonies.
6. Rone in Geelong
Feb 27 2021 – May 16 2021
Over the last 20 years, street artist Rone has cemented himself as one of Australia’s most successful street artists. The artist (real name Tyrone Wright) has carved himself a niche in the world of urban art by routinely taking over abandoned places and distressed spaces and filling them with large, despondent portraits of women. What you might not know is that Rone is from Geelong, and he’s returning there for his first survey exhibition from late February.
7. Photo 2021
Feb 18 2021 – Mar 7 2021
Photo 2020 – which was set to be the largest and most significant photography event in Australia – was just about to really get started when a certain something put the whole world on pause. However, the huge event was rescheduled, not cancelled, and will re-emerge as Photo 2021 from February 18 to March 7, 2021. Photo 2021 brings together free exhibitions and a massive public program to Melbourne and cities across Victoria. Works in the inaugural event are based around the central theme of ‘the truth’ and features photographers from around the world.
Feb 14 2021 – Jun 1 2021
It’s hard to fully comprehend the impact that artist Mirka Mora had on Melbourne. The French-born artist emigrated to Melbourne in 1951 following the Holocaust, and quickly set about ingraining herself and her playful art within the city’s growing bohemian scene. There have been many exhibitions on Mora, but none quite like this. The Jewish Museum of Australia has announced that it will host Mirka: the most extensive survey of Mirka Mora ever.
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