As winter spreads across the nation, our Tasmanian brothers and sisters are embracing the darkness with 2014’s instalment of the Museum of Old and New Art’s (MONA) winter festival ‘Dark Mofo’. Running from June 12-22 Dark Mofo is a festival celebrating large scale public art, food, film, music, light and noise.
Last year’s Dark Mofo festival attracted more than 128,000 punters to events across the 10 days of the festival. We know that Hobart has the claim to Australia’s greatest art gallery MONA, but thanks to MONA and its Dark Mofo festival what else does Hobart have that we’re missing out on? Check out our guide to the top five things only Hobart has- thanks to Dark Mofo.
Doom Legends Sunn O)))
For the past 16 years, Sunn O))) have been at the fore of doom. Core members Stephen O’Malley and Greg Anderson have forged connections between metal, drone, contemporary composition, jazz and minimalism and for Dark Mofo 2014, they perform as a quartet, with O’Malley and Anderson joined by Attila Csihar and Tos Nieuwenhuizen in an Australian exclusive.
According to Dark Mofo Creative Director, Leigh Carmichael he “attempted to secure Sunn O))) for the inaugural event last year; such is their appeal to us as a festival. They are certainly extreme, and also considered at the forefront of the drone/doom scene, so they are an obvious choice for Dark Mofo.”
Avant-garde Performer Diamanda Galás
Similar to Sunn O))), Diamanda is considered to be at the forefront of her chosen genre – she’s an avant-garde composer, vocalist, pianist, organist and performance artist.
Dark Mofo Creative Director, Leigh Carmichael says “Diamanda’s name was thrown around from the very first conceptual meetings about Dark Mofo and we are delighted that she’ll be performing exclusively for us. When someone is described as ‘capable of the most unnerving vocal terror’, then we will go to the ends of the earth to ensure they are a part of the Dark Mofo experience.
“Some of the themes she explores like despair, injustice and mental illness are areas that we are also interested in, and winter seems to be an appropriate time of the year to look deeper into these ideas.”
Sunday June 22, Theatre Royal.
David Lynch’s Muse Chrysta Bell
Dark Mofo Creative Director Leigh Carmichael says “David Lynch has fascinated me personally for a long time, and it’s his relentless work interpreting absurdity that interests me the most. I have also been an avid reader of Albert Camus and many of my curatorial decisions are based on ideas and philosophical questions raised by both these thinkers.”
“Of course, we’d love to have David Lynch here in person one day as part of Dark Mofo, but for now we are more than pleased to have Chrysta Bell perform songs composed and written by Lynch.”
According to Lynch himself the first time he saw her perform, he “thought she was like an alien – the most beautiful alien ever.”
Saturday June 14, Odeon Theatre.
‘Articulated Intersect’ by Rafael Lozano-Hemmer
In an Australian first, Dark Mofo presents Articulated Intersect, which is a large-scale installation by Mexican-Canadian electronic artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, lighting up the Hobart sky each night for the duration of the festival with the generous support of Hydro Tasmania during its centenary year, and the City of Hobart.
According to Carmichael“Dark Mofo at its core is a public art project set in the Tasmanian winter landscape, and an opportunity for MONA to reach a broader audience. Having the opportunity to use one of the most beautiful cities in the world – even more so in winter – as a canvas or space for large scale public work is so important.”
Articulated Intersect produces an interactive canopy of spotlights visible over a 15-kilometre radius that creates personalised light sculptures to segment the sky. The public interacts with the lights using large lever-controllers, situated on the three sides of Sullivan’s Cove in Hobart, and when two or more of these light apexes intersect, the lights engage in a pulsating autonomous animation, delivering haptic feedback to the participants, signalling that they are creating a remote intersection.
Friday June 13-Monday June 23, Everywhere
Future Hobart 2014: Vito Acconci and Acconci Studio
For Dark Mofo 2014, City of Hobart and MONA have invited New York architect, artist and cultural icon Vito Acconci (with Maria Mirabal Acconci, Areej Alhaj and Cedric Benetti of Acconci Studio) to present concept design plans for a new public architecture project that will reestablish connections between the Queens’ Domain areas east and west of the Brooker Highway; meaning that the Domain parkland, the Soldiers Memorial Avenue and the Cenotaph would be reunited for public access.
These plans will be open to public debate during Dark Mofo with a public forum hosted by Fenella Kernebone of Radio National’s By Design, accompanied by an exhibition of the proposed concept plans at the Old Mercury Building supported by Detached.
Explained by Carmichael “public spaces are so important to a city – these spaces are where we meet, commemorate, remember and celebrate who we are. Often we don’t think about them much. But at MONA, we believe that a good, worthwhile discussion around them and their future – and time to think about what is important to us in relation to public space – is extremely valuable, especially to those given the privilege of managing them our behalf.”
Tuesday June 17, Hobart Town Hall
Dark Mofo runs from June 12-22, for more info and to buy tickets visit www.darkmofo.net.au