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This Week in The Can

HerCanberra Team

Canberra get ready! This week is going to be big! With Fashfest 2015 ready to roll out the red carpet coming opening night this Wednesday, there’ll be more fashion floating around the capital, than you can poke a stick at. Fashion not your cup of tea? Catch the Canberra Roller Derby League or the CBR Brave this Saturday and Sunday.

Celebrate everything wool at the Old Bus Depot Markets, catch a show at The Street Theatre or support a good cause and book your ticket to the Domestic Violence Crisis Centre’s Blue & White Gala Ball. There always plenty do for foodies, market dwellers, theatre goers and even art lovers too including a meander through the numerous, inspirational galleries. Here’s what’s happening This Week in The Can!


Fashfest 2015

Fashfest is first and foremost about the nation’s capital and its talent. It’s the biggest annual fashion event held in Canberra—our classy take on the major fashion weeks held in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Perth. And it arrives this week! Opening night is Wednesday 13 May running right through until Saturday 16 May with a special Market Day to pick up your favourite designer pieces on Sunday 17 May. This sensational red-carpet event features a different show each night, VIP after-parties, publicity events and more. Tickets available here and all you need to know about this year’s line-up here. On Wednesday 13 to Saturday 16 May at the National Convention Centre.

Blue & White Gala Ball

Domestic Violence Crisis Service is excited to announce their biggest event in their 27 year history, their Blue & White Gala Ball on this Saturday. Statistically one in three women and one in five men will be subjected to domestic violence at some point during their lifetime. The night is about creating an awareness about the DVCS, what they do and how they can help you, so if you do fall into that category, you know how to seek help. Tickets $200 each and available here. On Saturday 16 May from 7pm at QT Canberra.

Landmark women: Amanda Whitley

Our very own Amanda Whitley is the speaker in National Museum of Australia’s Landmark Women series this Friday 15 May 2015. The series celebrates the lives and passions of distinguished women living and working in Canberra. From 10am to 12 noon at the Visions Theatre and Friends Lounge. Cost is $10 non-members and Essentials; $5 full Friends members; full concession members free. Includes refreshments. Bookings essential by email [email protected] or phone 02 6208 5021. On Friday 15 May from 10am-12pm at National Museum of Women.

of birds | native bird feathers by Meg Morton

After two years in the making, Meg Morton is excited to bring to fruition of birds | native bird feathers. Focusing on nature and fallen objects found in Australian landscapes, Meg is a self taught artist living in Canberra and works with found natural objects, ink, watercolour and graphite on handmade cotton and linen paper. Here latest collection details the fallen feathers of native birds found across the Australian Capital Territory as well as the wider New South Wales region. This project is on a much larger scale yet is closely related to her previous work and is intended for exhibition entitled ‘of birds’ at the Nishi Gallery NewActon. Artworks range from 10″ x 7″ to 28″ x 36″ and will be available for purchase. Exhibition is open to the public until Sunday 17 May at Nishi Gallery, NewActon.

Trade Secret Grand Opening at Canberra Outlet Centre

The doors will open to Canberra Outlet Centre’s newest retailers, Kaisercraft and Trade Secret this Saturday and you’re invited! There’ll be an outside broadcast with 104.7FM, children’s activities and an in-centre Canberra Raiders signing session. Nicole Dwight, the Centre’s stylist, will be at the launch on the day running styling sessions and offering styling assistance to shoppers. So come along and grab some bargains! On Saturday 16 May from 9am to 1pm. 

International Museum Day

Go behind the scenes of the National Portrait Gallery on International Museum Day and explore how their exhibitions are planned. Learn about delivery, both upstairs in the galleries and downstairs in the registration area. Limited numbers, bookings essential. On Sunday 17 May from 11.30am to 12.30pm.


RSPCA Million Paws Walk

In its 10th year at Stage 88, the Canberra-based Million Paws Walk continues to be one of RSPCA’s most popular outdoor events for animal lovers and their furry friends. Enjoy a beautiful 5km walk around Lake Burley Griffin on a stunning Canberra autumn day with your pooch! On Sunday 17 May with the walk beginning at 11am. Register here.

SciNight: X-rated science for adults

Be seduced by science at Questacon’s next Scinight as it delves into some cheeky, adults-only topics for one night only. Take an intimate look into the science and technology behind genes, gender and reproduction. Get up close and personal with Sexual Health and Family Planning ACT and flirt with the 200-plus interactive exhibits at Questacon. If you work up an appetite, Mega Bites Café and Bar will be open till late. This is an 18+ event. For more information visit the Questacon website. Tickets $10 (available at the door). On Friday 15 May from 6pm-10pm at Questacon.

Googong Fishing Fair

Googong’s Beltana Park will play host to a free Fishing Fair this weekend with local fishing expert Rob Paxevanos to launch his latest DVD, featuring a special chapter about the Googong Dam. Discover tips and tricks on fly fishing and lure casting with a demonstration from 12.30pm with ACT Fly Casting Champion Danny Spelic and check out the latest and greatest fishing products from a range of local retailers. MasterChef finalist Alvin Quah will be on deck to cook up some of his favourite seafood recipes. There will be giveaways on the day and plenty of action for the kids including live bands, a jumping castle, reptile encounter and sausage sizzle. On Sunday 17 May from 11am-2pm at Googong’s Beltana Park. Visit Googong.net for more information.

Gallery Tours: All the fall highlights

See highlights of the exhibition All that fall: Sacrifice, life and loss in the First World War on a daily tour.  All that fall: Sacrifice, life and loss in the First World War is the National Portrait Gallery’s contribution to the Anzac Centenary. On now until 26 July at National Portrait Gallery.


Old Bus Depot Markets – A Celebration of Wool

Meet craftspeople who work with wool from Canberra and the region at the Old Bus Depot Markets – A Celebration of Wool. Speak to wool producers, craftspeople and artists. View hand spinning, learn about hand felting and watch people weaving. Mix with stallholders, craft enthusiasts and other visitors who love to knit, felt, design and make home wares. You’ll find hand felted garments and accessories, designer knitwear, millinery, weavings, funky beanies and farm label knitwear. There’s a vast array of woollen yarns, including hand spun and hand dyed yarns. Stock up on woollen items in time for winter. On Sunday 17 May from 10am to 4pm, Wentworth Avenue, Kingston.

Capital Region Farmers Market

Visit the largest regional markets in the Southern Tablelands—the Capital Region Farmers Market! Be tantalised by fruits, vegetables, plants, flowers, seafood, cakes, condiments, meats, cheeses and more. Fresh produce reflects the exciting seasonal characteristics and diversity of the region providing opportunity for you to learn more about the food you’re eating and the region it comes, and discuss what you’re buying with the growers. On every Saturday from 7.30am to 11.30am at Exhibition Park on Flemington Road.

Gorman House Markets

For a quarter of a century, the Gorman House Markets have been Canberra’s much loved meeting place providing opportunities for the community and visitors alike to express themselves creatively, trade and shop in a vibrant environment, access to an audience, engage in the arts and be a part of living heritage. Experience them from 10am to 4pm every Saturday at Gorman House, Ainslie Avenue, Braddon.


Perception Deception

Does your brain play tricks on you? Is one person’s reality the same as yours? Answer these questions and more with the Perception Deception exhibition at Questacon. Surprise your senses and challenge your mind with over 60 hands-on and multimedia exhibits featuring perceptual test and illusions.  This family-friendly exhibition reveals how our brains process information from our senses to form our perception of the world around us. Sometimes all is not as it seems! On now until 30 September 2015. For entry prices visit the website.


There’s always heaps for people of all ages to do at Questacon – check out their list of events here.

National Dinosaur Museum Weekend Tours

The National Dinosaur Museum holds tours every weekend. Join one of their expert staff to experience a journey through time. Take your camera, your friends, those burning dinosaur questions and join the knowledgeable staff for a fun and educational tour suitable for all ages. Tours are free with admission. Tours are 30-minutes and run every weekend at 11am, 12pm, 2pm and 3pm until 27 December.

Play Up

Play Up pokes its tongue out at the idea that museums are hands off. Stand up, muck up, dress up, make up, think up and step up in a fabulous space that has turned the traditional idea of what goes on in museums completely on its head. In Play Up it is visitors to the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House (MOADOPH) who are the curators – the exhibition has been developed with children and celebrates the 25th anniversary of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child Play Up celebrates the important role children have in the cultural life of our communities. Most importantly Play Up is a place for fun. At the MOADOPH and open from 9am to 5pm daily until June 2015.

Family Space

The National Portrait Gallery has something for everyone to enjoy this school holidays in the Portrait Gallery Adventure Family Space. Explore the lives of Australia’s greatest adventurers through interactive art carts, dioramas and dress ups. Make your own portrait that expresses your spirit of adventure using fun art materials and the photo booth. All materials provided and free for all to enjoy! From 11am to 4pm daily.

Leap into your local library

Your local library is a treasure trove…not only are there free books and resources, there are regular amazing events! Giggle & Wiggle with your little ones (up to 2 years) and help them learn through language play using interactive rhymes, songs, games and stories. Looking to improve your English and make new friends, then head along to your local library for one of the informal English conversation groups. For more events and info check them out here.


Subsdance Zumbathon

Crazy about Zumba? Join Subsdance for a 90-minute Zumbathon to celebrate the launch of lunchtime Zumba sessions at the Canberra Outlet Centre.

The fun happens at Canberra Outlet Centre in Fyshwick at 10am this Sunday 17 May.

Cost is $20. Cash only accepted on the day.

CBR Brave v Melbourne Mustangs

They took out #1 in the 2014 Australian Ice Hockey League season, but can the CBR Brave claim a home victory in this weekend’s double header? Armed with new imports, old favourites and ready to wrap up unfinished business from their inaugural 2014 season, CBR Brave returns to the ice this weekend. Catch all the action at Phillip Ice Skating Centre when the puck drops at 5.30pm on Saturday 16 May and 5pm Sunday 17 May. Tickets available online now.

Canberra Roller Derby League: Game Two 

Game two for the 2015 CRDL season will see the Brindabelters face off against the Black ‘n’ Blue Belles. Last time these teams met, the Belters managed to snatch victory from the Belles in the very last jam. With both teams looking to improve on last year, will the Belters come out on top, or can the Belles seize the victory to kick off their 2015 campaign? Grab your tickets through Moshtix or at the door. On Saturday 16 May with doors open at 5pm at Tuggeranong Southern Cross Stadium.


Agatha Christie’s Spiderweb

Farce, murder, mystery and intrigue is being served up by the Tempo Theatre and all in support of [email protected]’s Social Programs, which provides food, clothing and essential services to the most vulnerable and disadvantaged in Canberra. Attend a preview show of Agatha Christie’s Spiderweb you will be supporting a good cause with all funds being donated to [email protected]’s Social Programs.  Not only is thrills and laughs guaranteed, but the ticket prices is something else to smile about with tickets only costing $35 for adults and $30 for students.Tickets can be bought online from Commsatwork.org. On Thursday 14 May from 7.30pm-10.30pm at Belconnen Theatre, Belconnen.

Australian National Eisteddfod Trivia Night

Where can you have a great night with friends, while competing for prizes, broadening your general knowledge and supporting a great community organisation? At the Australian National Eisteddfod’s 2015 Trivia Night! The first Eisteddfod division for 2015, featuring almost 100 bands and orchestras, will be held from May 21- 28. But the Australian National Eisteddfod’s Trivia Night will take place this Friday 15 May at the Hellenic Club, Woden; 7pm for 7.30pm start. Tickets $20 (tables of 10) by phoning Jayne on 0427 357 417.


I Love Photography Workshop

I Love Photography Workshop is a weekend digital photography course designed to teach everyday people how to get the most out of their digital photography and DSLR Cameras. It’s a jammed packed weekend of photography, picturesque Canberra locations and great food. A truly enjoyable and educational experience!  One day option available if that’s all the time you have, or feel that you already understand the theory/technical stuff and only wish to participate in the practical hands on sessions. Bookings required via the website. On Saturday 16 and Sunday 17 May from 10am to 5pm at Griffith Hall, Griffith.

In The Spotlight

In The Spotlight is a series of talks at the National Portrait Gallery exploring culture and identity through the lens of performers who have lived and appeared in the spotlight. On Sunday 17 May, hear David McAllister, Artistic Director Australian Ballet on performance and portraiture.

National Gallery of Australia talks and workshops

The National Gallery of Australia has an extensive program of talks and workshops run in conjunction with their current exhibitions. Hear about local and international artists or specific techniques. Be inspired by the greats and create your own artworks. Talks and workshops cater for a range of different age groups. For full details visit the NGA website.


Audi Festival of German Films

With a collection of films highlighting a robust and very creative film industry in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, the Audi Festival of German Films is a spectacular assemblage. The variety of movies is most amazing, ranging from thrillers, alpine Western to comedies and thigh-slapping Kraut pleasers. Head along to Palace Electric Cinemas from Wednesday 13 to Sunday 31 May to catch the very best of German filmmaking from arthouse films to massive European box office hits. Tickets and session times available here.

I am Jack

I am Jack could not be more timely as bullying, in all it’s guises, becomes increasingly unacceptable behaviour wherever it may occur. This is a great show to raise the awareness of this with young children. On Wednesday 13 and Thursday 14 May at Q Theatre, Queanbeyan. Tickets available here

Morning Melodies

Luke Kennedy, who has his own story of spending time on the dark side, will definitely lift your spirits with a lyric tenor voice that is one of the best I have ever heard. As a bonus he will be joined in his Morning Melodies show by Michael Falzon, who is co-starring with him in “Jesus Christ Superstar” at the AIS Arena in June. Michael was critically acclaimed for his performances in “We Will Rock You” the Queen tribute show and also “Rock Of Ages”. You’ll have to get in quick though, as seats are selling fast. On Thursday 21 May at 10.30am, Q Theatre Queanbeyan. Tickets available here

Drowning in Veronica Lake

Drowning in Veronica Lake may not be the warmest of titles it does throw a light on what life can be like behind the glitz and glamour of a Hollywood lifestyle. So often people have fantasies about how movie stars live. But the consequences of their fame often have a tragic ending. So many talented actors are tormented by egos that are as fragile as snowflakes. Opening 30 May at Q Theatre, Queanbeyan. Tickets available here

The Faithful Servant

Frederick is trying to get his daughter Caroline to take up the leadership of the medical NGO he founded. Caroline refuses. It is just as important to do good in Australia as among the poor nations of the world, she says, although the real reasons for her refusal seem far more personal. As Frederick slides into sickness and death, he begins to go back and forth in his mind between the past and present, Australia and Mozambique, Caroline and Pereira. The Faithful Servant is part of First Seen, The Street’s season of new works-in-progress. Tickets $15. On Sunday 17 May from 3pm at The Street Theatre.

Twenty Years of FourPlay

Australia’s most versatile and enduring string quartet, FourPlay, are celebrating their 20th birthday with a special afternoon performance at The Street Theatre. Finally out of adolescence and into early adulthood, FourPlay’s 20th year has taken them to New York’s Carnegie Hall and London’s Barbican Centre and seen them release their first album of entirely original material. This will be FourPlay’s last gig in Canberra this year, with the band heading overseas for the development of a new collaboration with Neil Gaiman and other personal and professional commitments. Tickets start at $19 child; $25 student; and $35 adult. On Sunday 17 May from 3pm at The Street Theatre.

Hell Ain’t a Bad Place

Hell Ain’t a Bad Place to Be celebrates the music, the heartbreak and the life of Bon Scott – a quintessential rock and roll story that ended far too soon. The show tells of Scott’s childhood, his family, his secrets, the bands that came before his rise to fame with AC/DC and his rock and roll dreams. It follows Bon’s life from Scotland to Australia and the bands that came before AC/DC – the Spektors, the Valentines and Fraternity. From hippie epiphanies to bubblegum pop to the iconic early years of AC/DC. Tickets from Canberra Ticketing. Transaction fees apply. On Friday 15 and Saturday 16 May at Canberra Theatre Centre.


What my mother told me: Thorough Bass

Chamber music ensemble Thorough Bass offer up intimate music composed for cello and harpsichord for the acoustically superb architecture of the High Court. What My Mother Told Me includes three of Antonio Vivaldi’s beautiful cello sonatas and two contemporary works by Australian composers, Ann Carr-Boyd and Elena Kats Chernin. This concert offers considerable variation in mood ranging from athletic high spirits to profound elegy. Bookings via the High Court website necessary for entry. Seating not guaranteed. On Sunday 17 May from 1.30pm at High Court of Australia, Parkes. Free entry.

Salut! Baroque May Concert: The Quartet

Salut! Baroque’s May concert, The Quartet, comprises music from Telemann, his good friends Handel, JS Bach, and his godson CPE Bach. Telemann, Handel and CPE, all ex-lawyers, understood the value of self-promotion and used it to their advantage. The curmudgeonly old Johann Sebastian spent his life rebelling and consequently his genius was not recognised during his lifetime.  Salut! has delighted Australian audiences for 20 years, presenting the best of baroque with Australia’s finest baroque musicians. Tickets available at the door ($35 concession; $40 adult; children under 15 free). On Friday 15 May from 7.30pm at Albert Hall, Yarralumla.


Mostly Mendelssohn

The combination of youthful vigour, old-world wisdom and dazzling technique have led critics to compare American violin virtuoso Stefan Jackiw to a young Isaac Stern. His solo performance of Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto with the YouTube Symphony Orchestra at Sydney Opera House was watched live online by more than 30 million people worldwide. Now this exciting artist joins the Australian Chamber Orchestra in a program powered by musical prodigies. Tickets available online. On Saturday 16 May from 8pm at Llewellyn Hall.

Jasmine Rae

Three time ARIA nominated Jasmine Rae is becoming recognized as one of Australia’s leading singers, songwriters and performers. Australian music fans voted Jasmine Rae ‘Female Oz Artist of the Year’ at the 2014 CMC Music Awards. Her most recent album If I Want To was nominated for an ARIA Award and four Golden Guitar Awards. Jasmine Rae has recorded with US stars Joe Nichols and Kellie Pickler, Australian Country superstar Adam Brand and The Audreys. She’s toured nationally with Lee Kernaghan, Alan Jackson and Brooks and Dunn in recent years and continues to build a loyal following here and overseas. Tickets available through Ticketek. On Friday 15 May from 7.30pm at Casino Canberra.

Ian Moss

Respected as one of Australia’s iconic musicians, five times ARIA winner Ian Moss delivers an unforgettable sound – not only as a telling soloist on guitar but especially with his silken voice, ringing with clarity, resonating with pure soul. Ian’s distinctive vocal is the essential signature of his soulful, bluesy music, as it has been since his first tentative foray into music during the early 1970s. Ian will be performing all of the classic hits from his solo career, as well as all the Cold Chisel classics, performed as only Ian can. Tickets from $55 through The Street website. On Saturday 16 May from 8pm at The Street Theatre.

The Front Room

Explore Australia’s TV, radio and music collection at your leisure in the National Film and Sound Archive’s latest screen and sound experience in Acton – The Front Room. Discover the history of sound, music and broadcast in comfort. Listen to radio broadcasts on a 1950s radiogram, watch classic TV in the lounge space or play CDs on one of the listening posts. Whether you’ve got five minutes or five hours, there’s always something to see, hear or do in The Front Room. Free entry. Open Monday to Friday 9am-5pm until 24 December at National Film and Sound Archive.

No Lights, No Lycra

There is no light, no lycra, no teacher, no steps to learn, no technique, just free movement. NLNL is a space where you can completely let go, shake out the stresses of the week, and lose yourself in the music and the physicality of your body. NLNL is a daggy, non-pretentious place to completely be yourself.

NLNL takes place in two locations across Canberra: Monday nights from 6:30pm to 8:30pm at Mugga Mugga Scout Hall in Red Hill, and Wednesday nights from 7.30pm to 9pm at St John’s Anglican Church Hall in Reid (corner of Constitution Ave and Anzac Park West).

Lots of free onsite parking available, and admission still just $5 on the door.

Vinyl Lounge at NFSA

The popular Vinyl Lounge is back for 2015 at the National Film and Sound Archive. Join other vinyl lovers for nibbles then spin the turntables with your favourites records from 5.30pm. The NFSA’s Vinyl Lounge is on the first Friday of every month and is the perfect way to end the day (and working week). Reminscent of record clubs of the 1970s, enjoy a diverse selection of pop, rock, folk, world, funk and lounge music from the Golden Age of vinyl. Bring your own LPs and groove into the Vinyl Lounge. On the first Friday of each month from 5pm.

Weekly Dance Party for the Over 30s

30+ Dance Event will be hosting weekly Dance Parties every Saturday night at The RUC where you will be provided with an entralling and relaxed atmosphere to meet new people at your own leisure. A fun, safe and comfortable atmosphere to dance, meet new or other likeminded persons, romance, flirt or socialise and make friends. These are popular weekly Saturday night evens and the ideal night out for fun-loving socialable 30+s with pulsating music from the 60s, 70s, 80, 90s plus much more. Visit 30 Plus Dance Event for details. On every Saturday from 8pm onwards at The RUC, Turner and $20 per head.

Live Local Music

This post isn’t long enough to list all the various gigs around town, but if you’re into live music, we heartily suggest you check out what’s on offer at The Phoenix, Transit Bar, The Front, The Abbey, and BMA’s gig guide.


100 Years of Kingston Power House

Canberra Glassworks invites you on a special tour of Canberra’s oldest public building, Kingston Power House, which turns 100 years old in 2015. Designed by John Smith Murdoch, this building was the heartbeat of Canberra in its early years. It powered the development of this built city, housed its telecommunications system and provided employment for many people across the region. Bookings essential on (02) 6260 7005 or email [email protected]. On until 6 June 2015.

Return to ANZAC Cove – ‘Your Friend The Enemy’

During two expeditions in 2013 and 2014, groups of 13 Australian and New Zealand artists set up their easels in the Dardanelles, revisiting ‘the most sacred corner of Australian soil.’ Tens of thousands of young men lost their lives here during the 1914-18 war. The exhibition shows their vision of this landscape. On now until 17 May 2015 at Drill Hall Gallery, Kingsley Street Canberra. Entry is free.


As part of DESIGN Canberra, Craft ACT: Craft + Design Centre is thrilled to partner with the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House (MoAD), to bring you an exciting exhibition Bespoke: Design for the people. In this stunning exhibition, six Australian craft and design practitioners have created new works that reflect and respond to the iconic designs of the original furniture at Old Parliament House. Each artist was given unprecedented access to the rooms and collections, and the freedom to create a personal response. Informed by their own artistic backgrounds, each artist considered notions of political perspective, change, accountability and power in their pieces. The result is a thought-provoking collaboration between design, creativity and Australia’s political history. Artists include Canberra artists Jennifer Robertson, Niklavs Rubenis, Julie Ryder, Caren Florance, in collaboration with Melinda Smith; and Sydney-based artist Cecelia Heffer. The exhibition will run until November 2015. To view the full DESIGN Canberra program of events visit their website.

James Turrell: A Retrospective

Following sell-out shows in Los Angeles and at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, comes the National Gallery of Australia’s 2014 summer blockbuster James Turrell: A Retrospective. Never before seen in Australia and showing only in Canberra, James Turrell is considered one of the greatest artists of our time. The National Gallery of Australia’s retrospective combines works from LACMA’s tour with spectacular new, site-specific installations. The exhibition is open until Monday 8 June, 2015 at the National Gallery of Australia. Ensure to check the exhibitions time changes over Christmas (closed Christmas Day). Tickets are available to purchase through Ticketek but bookings are also essential as only 15 people are allowed through in any one session.

Norforce: Tony Albert

Tony Albert works in a number of art forms, including drawing, painting, photography, and installation. A founding member of Queensland’s indigenous art collective proppaNOW, Albert’s art explores political, historical and cultural issues relevant to indigenous people in Australia today. Albert exhibits internationally and nationally and has been the recipient of numerous awards and prizes. Most recently Albert won the City of Sydney commission to create a public artwork in Hyde Park. Titled Yininmadyemi – Thou didst let fall the artwork honours the military service of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander service men and women. Open until 3 November 2015 at the Australian War Memorial.

Warlpiri Drawings: Remembering the Future

Warlpiri Drawings: Remembering the Future tells the story of an intriguing collection of artworks created by Warlpiri people in the 1950s. Glimpsed through the eyes of the collector as well as more recent Warlpiri interpretations, Warlpiri Drawings explores how drawing has been used to make sense of 80 years of monumental change, to picture life in the present and look hopefully towards the future. The exhibition is open until 31 May 2015 at the National Museum of Australia.

Other exhibitions

For a comprehensive round up of smaller exhibitions around town, visit Capital Magazine.


Kerry Johns ‘Forest Subjective’ 

Kerry Johns’ landscape paintings may be familiar to Canberrans from her 2012 show at Chapman Gallery in Manuka, where Monaro-inspired landscapes sat alongside those stimulated by her years on the Eurobodalla coast. These coastal works have often taken the iconography of the spotted gum coastal forest as their motif and starting point. The recurring motif in this exhibition is the stands of forest that dominate the headlands of the south coast, though the real subject of the paintings could be said to be the interplay of light, colour, shape and the ambiguity of positive and negative space. Forest Subjective runs from Monday 11 to Monday 31 May, and will be open weekdays 9.30am-2.30pm and weekends 10am-4pm. For further details contact Form Studio and Gallery (0430 359 776) and see the paintings at kerryjohns.com and formstudioandgallery.com.au

Claire Primrose Memory Mapping

Claire’s current body of work is inspired and informed by many different locations from the Australian landscape —a collection of landscape inspired abstracted paintings. She is interested in recreating the surfaces, textures and colours evocative of a particular place, although each work is a culmination of many different images, spaces and experiences, achieved through memory and experimentation. Claire works outside on location and incorporate elements of her surroundings. On Monday 11 to Monday 31 May at Form Studio, Queanbeyan.

Australia in the Great War

Australia in the Great War is the Australian War Memorial’s new exhibition in the First World War Galleries. Discover one of the world’s great collections of material related to the First World War. The First World War Galleries integrate a wide variety of items from this collection, including dioramas, art works; uniforms; medals; technology such as artillery and firearms; photographs; film; and letters and diaries.  The Australian War Memorial presents the story of Australia in the First World War chronologically, covering all major theatres of operations: Gallipoli, the Western Front, Sinai and Palestine and the war at sea. On display now until 1 January 2017 at the Australian War Memorial.

Afghanistan: The Australian Story

Afghanistan and the Middle East are now linked to Australia’s national story. Australia’s mission is clear: to combat international terrorism, to stabilise Afghanistan, and to support Australia’s international alliances. Yet a mission statement cannot capture the challenges, the successes, and the comradeship of the Australian men and women who pursue it. Nor the joys and heartbreaks, or the loneliness and the dedication of those who wait at home. Some of these experiences, set against the powerful imagery of a modern war, are told in this exhibition. Over time, the display will change and evolve as more veterans share their stories. On display until 3 November 2015.

William Edwin Pidgeon (1909–1981), war correspondent and artist

William Edwin Pidgeon was a painter, cartoonist, illustrator, and newspaper critic. This exhibition presents a selection of the over 400 works by William Pidgeon held in the Australian War Memorial’s Art collection. The works relate to Pidgeon’s Second World War experiences in Darwin, New Guinea, Borneo and Morotai between 1943 to 1945. On display in the Second World War Galleries until 7 March 2016 at the Australian War Memorial.

National Photographic Portrait Prize 2015

The National Photographic Portrait Prize exhibition is selected from a national field of entries that reflect the distinctive vision of Australia’s aspiring and professional portrait photographers and the unique nature of their subjects. On until 8 June at the National Portrait Gallery.

Uncommon Australians: The vision of Gordon and Marilyn Darling

Uncommon Australians: The vision of Gordon and Marilyn Darling showcases portraits acquired through the generosity of the National Portrait Gallery’s Founding Patrons, L Gordon Darling AC CMG and Marilyn Darling AC; and pays tribute to the Darlings’ persistence in turning their private dream of a gallery of portraits of ‘uncommon Australians’ into a tangible collection in a purpose-built home. Accompanied by a lavish catalogue, the exhibition tours to McClelland Sculpture Park and Gallery, Victoria, and the Tweed Regional Gallery, New South Wales. On now until 14 June at the National Portrait Gallery.

Ben Quilty: After Afghanistan

Ben Quilty toured Afghanistan in 2011 as the Australian War Memorial’s official war artist. His exhibition presents works of art developed from his experience.  “The portraits of these servicemen and servicemen move beyond the physical exterior of the subject to delve into emotions and experiences that lie below” Dr Brendan Nelson. On now until 27 May 2015 at the Australian War Memorial. Entry is free.

Alex Seton: As of today

See the remarkable sculptures that commemorate the lives of the 41 soldiers who lost their lives while serving in Afghanistan.  “The power of the sculpted flags is developed through the way their pale marble, slightly pink in hue and each imbued with blushes and veins represents an individual and a life lost in the line of duty” Dr Brendan Nelson. On now until 27 May 2015 at the Australian War Memorial. Entry is free.

Urban Suburban

Comprised entirely of works from the Canberra Museum and Gallery visual arts collection, this exhibition explores urban and suburban Canberra. The works examine Canberra as a town and a city independent of the national monuments that define it as the Nation’s Capital.

From black-and-white photographs of the city from the 1960s through to the work of contemporary artists examining life in the suburbs, the exhibition reveals the rituals and experiences that enrich life in Canberra and discovers thematic links between the diverse works in the Collection. Urban Suburban encompasses a range of media including printmaking, photography, painting and sculpture. On until 21 June 2015 at Canberra Museum and Gallery.

Art & Dementia: Portrait Conversations

Art and dementia – Portrait conversations is a special interactive tour for people living with dementia and their carer. The tour is free, bookings essential. On now until 19 May at the National Portrait Gallery.

Jenni Kemarre Martiniello: Reinventing the Weave

ReInventing the Weave features the sublime, hand blown woven glass sculptures of Jenni Kemarre Martiniello. Weaving has been a long and durable practice within Australian Indigenous Cultures. The artist’s works are inspired by, and draw upon, the beauty of traditional woven objects while paying respect to the elegant forms of these utilitarian vessels. The glass weave technique explores the geometry and precision of the traditional form, fusing it with the exquisite beauty of glass and light to celebrate the juncture of object and art. Curator: Kelli Cole. On now until 7 June 2015 at the Canberra Glassworks.

The Home Front: Australia during the First World War

Commemorating the centenary of the First World War, The Home Front looks at life back at home and the pride, sorrow, passion, wonder and joy experienced by those far from the battlefields. On display at the National Museum of Australia until 1 January 2017.

Through 23 personal stories, this exhibition explores Australians’ choices, opportunities and challenges in a time of heightened emotions. See the effects of war on those at home. Rediscover Prime Minister Billy Hughes’s determination to impose conscription on a divided nation, Basil Watson’s thrilling and ultimately tragic aerobatic displays in his homemade biplane, May Gibbs’s quaint postcards that carried messages of joy to soldiers and more.

Crisis 1914! The call to arms

Crisis 1914! The call to arms explores the political events which led to Australia’s involvement in the First World War, from outbreak of war in August to the first convoy’s departure in November 1914. In Australia’s first crisis as a new nation, we went willingly, even enthusiastically, into the war. See the original cabinet table used in 1914, along with other memorabilia from the era which help to tell the story of Australia’s political journey. This exhibition contributes to the Anzac Centenary, marking 100 years of service by Australian servicemen and women, and the experience of war by all Australians. At the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House until 5 August 2015.

Without Consent

Without Consent: Australia’s past adoption practices is now open at the National Archives.  An exhibition of moving experiences of heartbreak and resilience, shared by people impacted by Australia’s past adoption practices. This project has been assisted by the Department of Social Services. Open now until 19 July at the National Archives, Parkes.

The Front Room

Explore Australia’s TV, radio and music collection at your leisure in the National Film and Sound Archive‘s latest screen and sound experience in Acton – The Front Room. Discover the history of sound, music and broadcast in comfort. Listen to radio broadcasts on a 1950s radiogram, watch classic TV in the lounge space or play CDs on one of the listening posts. Whether you’ve got five minutes or five hours, there’s always something to see, hear or do in The Front Room. Open until 24 December 2015. Visit their website for more information.

Art is a Weapon

Art is a Weapon takes you back to an Australia gripped by the Cold War. Amid propaganda for and against communism, artists turned to an image familiar to most Australians; the Southern Cross flag of the Eureka Stockade. The portfolio contains fourteen works from ten artists, including three from prominent Melbourne artist Noel Counihan. Counihan was a Social Realist who was heavily involved in the Communist Party, and was well-known in the Melbourne art community. The works reflect both the Eureka rebellion itself and, more broadly, the themes of workers’ rights and struggles against the established authorities.

Art is a Weapon explores how the Eureka story, legend and iconography have been used by groups and causes of all political flavours to spread their message. Alongside the portfolio of works, other objects and artworks using the Southern Cross motif show how the idea of Eureka has been adopted by groups as diverse as young communists and motorcycle clubs. Open now at the Museum of Australian Democracy. Visit their website for more information.

Behind the Lines 2014

Superheroes. Battle axes. Death stares. Who said politics was dry and dull? Highly anticipated and scorchingly honest, Behind the Lines 2014 celebrates the best political cartoons of 2014. The exhibition – one of the most anticipated of the year for politic tragics is now open at the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House. In the 2014 exhibition, cartoonists wryly comment on Tony Abbott’s first year in government. They see the Coalition attempting to deliver strong and stable leadership, as well as fulfilling their election promises to stop the boats, axe the tax, fix the budget and reduce red tape. Meanwhile, a restless Australian Labor Party waits for its Leader to ditch the past, move forward and say something. Each year the exhibition acknowledges a cartoonist as the Behind the Lines Political Cartoonist of the Year. Open until November 2015.

Afghanistan: The Australian Story

Afghanistan and the Middle East are now linked to Australia’s national story. Australia’s mission is clear: to combat international terrorism, to stabilise Afghanistan, and to support Australia’s international alliances. Yet a mission statement cannot capture the challenges, the successes, and the comradeship of the Australian men and women who pursue it. Nor the joys and heartbreaks, or the loneliness and the dedication of those who wait at home. Some of these experiences, set against the powerful imagery of a modern war, are told in this exhibition. Over time, the display will change and evolve as more veterans share their stories. Open until 3 November 2015 at the Australian War Memorial.

Enterprising Australians

An insight into how great ideas happen, hear the inspiring stories of Australia’s modern-day innovators. Discover the unique journey that inventors take from idea to product in this exhibition featuring video stories, product displays and interactive stations that explore the origins of products from a range of fields, including mining, agriculture, medical, automotive, and food science. Showing until 30 June 2016 at The Ian Potter Technology Learning Centre.

Keepsakes: Australians and The Great War

To mark the centenary of the First World War, the National Library of Australia invites you to explore their fascinating collection of wartime albums, medals, letters and diaries in Keepsakes. Keepsakes tells the story of The Great War as experienced by Australian servicemen and women, key political leaders, civilians, artists and families on the homefront. Discover how very personal stories become our nation’s collective memory. Open until Sunday 31 May 2015.

Power of 1: Does your voice count?

Discover the changing nature of Australian democracy and the power of your voice within it. Power of 1 is a ground breaking interactive exhibition shaped by the answers you share, about what matters to you. Step back in time to remember the events, people and experiences that have shaped each generation of Australians. Have your say about the state of democracy and help to create a new kind of museum experience curated by the voices of the Australian people. It’s time…have your say and be heard. Open until 12 November 2015 at Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House.

Ben Quilty: After Afghanistan

After spending over three weeks talking to Australian servicemen and women in Afghanistan, Ben Quilty felt an overwhelming need to tell their stories. He went there in October 2011 as an official war artist, commissioned by the Australian War Memorial and attached to the Australian Defence Force. His task was to record and interpret the experiences of Australians deployed as part of Operation Slipper in Kabul, Kandahar, and Tarin Kot in Afghanistan and at Al Minhad Airbase in the United Arab Emirates. Quilty’s work employs a wide range of genres, including portraits, figurative subjects, still-lifes and landscapes. On display until 14 August 2015.

Menzies: By John Howard

Former Prime Minister John Howard has curated this Menzies exhibition and shares his unique and personal insights, reflections and stories on the intense first term of former Prime Minister Robert Menzies. The exhibition marks the 75th anniversary of Robert Menzies’ first term as prime minister (1939-41) and features objects never before seen by the public, including personal items on loan from the Menzies family. Open now until 3 September 2015 at the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House.


Her Canberra

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