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CBR Trails: Creative Cycle

Adelaide Rief

For our Magazine: Dreams we asked some of Canberra’s most in-the-know to design us a guide to ‘Canberra in a day’…

One of my favourite things about Canberra’s creative scene is the mix of independent artists making incredible things happen behind the scenes and large–scale institutions charged with presenting our nation’s history.

Here’s my guide to the hidden gems and the stand-outs.

10AM – START PEDDLIN’

What better way to explore than carbon neutral? On your bike! Ride down the O’Connor/Turner bike path, and because you’ll definitely need it by then, grab a coffee–to–go at pop-up coffee cart, Sly Fox.

Sly Fox
| On the cycle path between Macarthur Avenue and David Street in Turner | Facebook @SlyFoxCoffee

10.15AM – CONTEMPORARY CRUCIBLE

Cruise onwards down the path, dodge the cockatoos having their morning tea and head to the ANU Art School Gallery. Here, you can see the finest of Canberra’s contemporary arts on display with a series of regularly changing exhibitions from graduates and post- graduate students.

ANU Art School Gallery | 
105 Childers Street, Acton | soa.anu.edu.au/school-of-art-gallery

11AM – PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE

Cycle down to the National Museum of Australia to check out the incredible collections and soak up some inspiration for your next creative project. No mouldy old exhibits here, the museum is bright and full of interactive exhibits. Be sure to check out the Australian Institute of Anatomy collection, featuring an array of preserved animals that are sure to inspire mild horror and a little bit of curiosity.

National Museum of Australia | Lawson Crescent, 
Acton Peninsula
 | nma.gov.au

12.30PM – A TASTY HOLE IN THE WALL

By this stage, you’ll be needing some lunch. Skip on over to the cosy little nook that is Barrio Collective Coffee on Lonsdale Street in Braddon for lunch. They do completely delicious light meals and some pretty interesting coffees (and a very, very good cup of tea for those, like me, who find the search for one an eternal struggle!).

Barrio Collective Coffee
 | 59/30 Lonsdale Street, Braddon | barriocollective.com

2PM – INDIE ARTS FEVER

Cruise into the CBD and head over to the Low Brow Gallery and Bar, independent street art gallery/shop/bar managed by Sancho Murphy, one of Canberra’s new breed of creative entrepreneurs. Then stroll through Garema Place, checking in at indie comics den, Impact Comics – my picks are Saga by Brian K Vaughan/Fiona Staples (USA) and Blue by Aussie comic artist Pat Grant.

Lowbrow Gallery and Bar | Level 2, 181 City Walk, Civic | sanchosdirtylaundry.com

Impact Comics
 | 16 Garema Place, Civic | impactcomics.com.au

3PM – CLOSE TO HOME

You’ll be close by so make a quick pit stop at the Canberra Museum and Gallery. They host some pretty special exhibitions and there’s some hilarious and poignant Canberra–related ephemera in the permanent collection.

Canberra Museum and Gallery | 176 London Circuit, Canberra | cmag.com.au

4PM TUNE IN

Turn your dial (or smart phone) to 2XX 98.3FM, Canberra’s own community radio. From 4pm-6pm catch Local N Live, playing the best music by local musicians, punctuated by some rolling and hilarious interviews.

2XX 98.3FM | 2xxfm.org.au/content/localnlive

4.30PM TREK

Take a hike up Mt Ainslie (while listing to 2XXFM!) and take in one of those glorious Canberra sunsets from the top. You’ll also marvel at the intricate plans that Marion Mahony Griffith drew for the original competition to design Canberra. Imagine our city if her and Walter’s visions had been realised?

Mt Ainslie | 
Mount Ainslie Drive, Ainslie | visitcanberra.com.au

6.30PM – I BET YOU’RE HUNGRY AGAIN!?

Grab dinner in NewActon at Močan and Green Grout (the fab people behind Goodspeed Bicycle Company), the ethical, seasonal and local café that’s both a delicious place for dinner and an art and design experience in itself with gorgeous wood panelling and an open kitchen. While you’re there, pop into Nishi Gallery, a stunning space with high ceilings and raw industrial finishes, showing the works of local artists.

Močan and Green Grout
 | 1/19 Marcus Clarke St, NewActon | mocanandgreengrout.com

Nishi Gallery | 
17 Kendall Lane, NewActon | newacton.com.au

8PM – STILL NOT ENOUGH?

See a show at The Street Theatre – an amazing selection of music, dance, theatre from local, interstate and international artists. A great place to tap into the beating heart of Canberra’s contemporary performance scene.

The Street Theatre
 | 15 Childers St, City West | thestreet.org.au

9PM – THE FINAL CURTAIN

Post-show, head to the Phoenix Pub, the home of Canberra’s live music scene. Grab a beer and a bench for that late night deep discussion about art and life you’ll need after such a jam-packed day!

Phoenix Pub | 23 East Row, Civic | lovethephoenix.com

Feature image: Martin Ollman

This article originally appeared as part of our CBR Trails article in Magazine: Dreams for Winter 2016. Find out more about Magazine here

Magazine_Six_Cover_LaurenCampbell

 

Adelaide Rief

Adelaide is co-managing producer of You Are Here, Canberra's festival of emerging and experimental arts and Creative Producer
 at Ainslie + Gorman Arts Centre. More about the Author

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