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Eight highlights of Art Not Apart 2018

Beatrice Smith

Canberra’s wildest festival is back with a full day of art and culture on Saturday 17 March.

Packed with performance art, music, live street art and some inventive mash ups of art and science, Art Not Apart (ANA) will kick off at 1 pm with a 6-hour explosion of culture, and run until the early hours with its afterparties.

We’re talking mermaids, street art, warehouse parties and a virtual reality experience with Canberra’s own rockstars, SAFIA. This year’s theme is Climax and will focus on works that “speak to the intensity of today, climate change, politics and other global tipping points.” The festival’s team explain that this direction has been driven, in part, by a new partnership with The Shine Dome.

A free festival with events and exhibitions for all ages, this will be Art Not Apart’s seventh year bringing their cutting-edge cultural program into the heart of Canberra. With that in mind, here are eight things not to miss for 2018.


Curated by Canberra music scene legend Frank Madrid, ANA 2018’s music line up is bigger than ever, with a genre-defying line up of live music spanning classical to jazz, pop to punk and thumping techno.

Art Not Apart 2017. Credit: Victor Tawagi.

Rising indigenous artist Benny Walker will join the likes of gypsy ensemble Nadya and Zoran’s 101 Candles Orkestra, Fun Machine and beloved Canberrans the Brass Knuckle Brass Band across a variety of stages on the day.

Art Not Apart 2017. Credit: Victor Tawagi.


This year, the Festival is bringing more flavour than ever to their food and drink offerings.

Bar Rochford. Credit: Martin Ollman for HerCanberra

Canberra favourites Morks, Asili, Wandering Woodfired Pizza Oven, Tikka Stand and Cannoli Brothers will be setting up shop to keep you fuelled throughout the day and as for beverages of all kinds, award-winning Bar Rochford (named Best Cocktail Bar in Australia by the Gourmet Traveller last year) will be running the festival bar.

Now that’s something to raise a glass to.


Wander down to Acton Beach (Canberra’s sandiest beach!) during the Festival and find a surprise – a storytelling mermaid or two (get your tickets now!).

Along with Miriam Pickard you’ll also meet Hanna Cormick. An experienced performer, Hanna will be debuting The Mermaid, her first work as a disabled artist.

Miriam Pickard with Australian Dance Party Dancers at The Shine Dome for the media launch of Art Not Apart 2018. Credit: Martin Ollman.

With a myriad of rare genetic diseases, Hanna recontextualises her wheelchair, braces, respirator mask and oxygen tank against the tipping point of the planet’s sickness. The Mermaid is not sick, the planet is sick and she is the measure.


This year, Art Not Apart’s new partnership with Canberra icon The Shine Dome (otherwise known as the Alien Embassy) has brought a new sub-theme to ANA 2018 – Art as Science Communication. As our modern world becomes more science aware (Bitcoin, global warming and virtual reality, anyone?) this new theme will explore the meeting of science and the arts, shaping works such as Yarringan’s Digester, a machine that creates biogas from food waste.


Enter the Nishi Gallery to explore one of the festival’s central exhibitions, ‘The Point, created by ANA Visual Arts curator Kirsten Farrell. Point will explore the festival’s 2018 theme of ‘Climax’ with intriguing results I’m sure…

Sitting at the heart of Art Not Apart’s sprawling campus and featuring artists such as Naomi Hamer, Tom Buckland and S.A.Adair, this will be one not to miss.

Click here to learn more.


The infamous Suitcase Rummage will return to ANA in 2018 with the same relaxed vibe as always. Spread across 70 different stalls, the Rummage will be the perfect place to pick up clothes, bric-a-brac, books, vintage goods, home wares and more.

Click here for more information.


With the sprawl of Art Not Apart encompassing the whole of NewActon from The Shine Dome and the NFSA in the north to Acton Beach in the south, not even the roads are being left out.

After its popularity last year, The Artery will feature over 100 metres of local street art along Edinburgh Avenue. As a bonus for those not able to make it on 17 March, the artwork will remain on display until the end of April.


Created to explore the darker side of contemporary art, the Art Not Apart after parties have gained a reputation in recent years for their no holds barred, jaw-dropping performance art featuring internationally acclaimed performance artists and musicians.

Chris Endrey, Sound and Fury 2017. Credit: Martin Ollman.

This year is shaping up to be no different with Sound and Fury “igniting” the National Film and Sound Archive with music, theatre, dance, spoken word and song, in “a spectacular party format”.

Want more? For those that want to see the sun rise, tech-yes is a warehouse party presenting the best of electronic culture in Canberra, featuring world-class music and projections. Tickets to both events are a must.

the essentials

What: Art Not Apart 2018
When: Saturday 17 March from 1 pm and run until the early hours
Where: NewActon, The Shine Dome, NFSA, and surrounds
Cost: Free, with some events ticketed
More information:

HerCanberra is a proud media partner of Art Not Apart 2018.


Beatrice Smith

Bea loves that her job as HerCanberra’s Online Editor involves eating, drinking and interviewing people - sometimes simultaneously. The master of HerCanberra’s publishing schedule, she’s usually found hunched over a huge calendar muttering to herself about content balance. Otherwise, you’ll find her at the movies or ordering a cheese board. More about the Author

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