Feast of arts and culture in NSW this summer

Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Hospitality, Racing and the Arts, George Souris, today encouraged Sydneysiders and visitors alike to get involved in a summer full of world class arts and cultural activities.

15 December 2011
Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Hospitality, Racing and the Arts, George Souris, today encouraged Sydneysiders and visitors alike to get involved in a summer full of world class arts and cultural activities.
Mr Souris said a series of internationally acclaimed festivals and exhibitions will be on show at the city’s cultural institutions and throughout Sydney this holiday season. 
“NSW is the cultural capital of the country and home to some of the best galleries, museums, theatres and arts events in the world,” Mr Souris said.
“From life sized dinosaurs to photography workshops, the phenomenon that is the Wiggles to the wonderful world of insects, there has never been a better time to visit our museums and galleries than this summer. 
“At the Art Gallery of NSW Picasso: Masterpieces from the Musée National Picasso, Paris is already captivating audiences from across Australia and Asia.
“Featuring 150 Picasso masterpieces, it is the most significant exhibition of works by the great Spanish artist to visit Australia.
“The holiday season is also a great time to visit the Powerhouse Museum where Harry Potter: The Exhibition is casting its spell on young and old alike.
“The Museum is the only venue in the Southern Hemisphere to host the exhibition, which is made up of hundreds of original film artefacts and items from the film series, such as props and costumes.   
“At the Australian Museum, discover colourful and contemporary Aboriginal paintings, objects as well as diverse film and photography as part of Yiwarra Kuji: The Canning Stock Route.
“The exhibition comprises works by emerging and established artists projecting an Indigenous perspective of the world’s longest stock route. 
“At the State Library of NSW this holiday season, the centenary of Australian exploration to the Antarctic is being marked with an exhibition focussing on the mapping of the frozen continent.
“Finding Antarctica: Mapping the Last Continent will feature a magnificent collection of rare maps and charts held by the State Library accompanied by published accounts and original sketches by members of various exploration parties. 
“At the Sydney Opera House, Summer at the House will feature an outstanding line up of shows, fun activities, magic and entertainment throughout the summer months.
“As well as a variety of performances, special discovery tours during the school holidays will reveal the stories and history of this World Heritage site.  
“This summer, the Museum of Contemporary Art will present Australia’s first solo exhibition by one of the world’s favourite interactive artists, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, as part of the Sydney International Art Series.
“This free exhibition features 12 recent artworks, including two new works made especially for Sydney.
“This show will offer visitors with an exciting first glimpse at one of the Museum’s refurbished galleries ahead of the opening of the new and expanded MCA in March 2012.
“But for many, summer in this vibrant city means the energy and variety of the artistic offerings of the Sydney Festival with an exciting program of 98 events and 388 performances.
“Celebrations will again kick off with Festival First Night on January 7 - a free night of musical entertainment which will see people dancing in the streets throughout the Sydney CBD to the vibrant and unique sounds of Gurrumul Yunupingu, Washington and international artist Manu Chao La Ventura.
“The 2012 program has been boosted by Sydney Festival Parramatta which will see a 10 day program specifically for Western Sydney audiences.  
“For short film buffs, a feast of entertainment will be on offer over January and February. 
“Flickerfest - renowned as Sydney’s first outdoor beachside cinema - will take centre stage at Bondi Beach between January 6 - 15, featuring the best short films from Australia and around the world.
“At the tail end of summer, the fun and excitement of the 20th annual Tropfest will hit The Domain on February 19, one of the world’s largest short film festivals.
“And if you are heading out of Sydney this holiday, why not drop into Newcastle Regional Gallery where selected pieces from the collection of the Art Gallery of NSW are on show as part of Australian Modern Masterpieces.
“There will be works by more than 30 icons of Australian modern art including Arthur Boyd, William Dobell, Russell Drysdale, Donald Friend, Sidney Nolan, Margaret Olley, John Olsen, Margaret Preston, Lloyd Rees, Jeffrey Smart and Brett Whiteley.
“Perhaps the biggest regional arts event over summer is the 40th annual Tamworth Country Music Festival, of which the NSW Government is a major supporter. 
“A variety of country music will delight large crowds during the event with more than 2,200 events and 4,000 performances between January 20 and January 29, 2012.
“These are just a sample of the arts and cultural treasures and adventures to be explored in NSW over summer and I urge everyone to take full advantage of them.” 

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