The annual winter pilgrimage to Mona has begun for this year’s Dark Mofo festivities
Mona’s winter festival delves into centuries-old solstice rituals, exploring the links between ancient and contemporary mythology, humans and nature, religious and secular traditions, darkness and light, and birth, death and renewal.
Since its inception in 2013, the festival has grown to attract over 400,000 attendances and more than 80,000 tickets sold for events last year.
This year’s festival features a prelude weekend from June 7-10, which includes new major exhibitions opening of ZERO at Mona and A Journey to Freedom at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, as well as an orchestral quartet performance at the Port Arthur historic site.
There will also be the new weekend-long literature, film, and ideas event, Dark and Dangerous Thoughts, a masked costume ball taking over an historic hotel, and art exhibitions across Hobart.
Dark Mofo’s full force festival runs from June 13 to June 24 with Australian exclusive performances, the return of Ryoji Ikeda’s xenon searchlight work spectra, the nude solstice swim, the two-weekend, seven night Winter Feast, the industrial art playground Dark Park with its ogoh-ogoh purging and burning, and the multi-venue late-night party precinct Night Mass.
The festival will also showcase large-scale light and sound works, and music ranging from doom and drone to chamber pop, ambient and noise, and a lot more.
Creative director Leigh Carmichael said it was the festival’s most expansive lineup yet.
“Dark Mofo is moving towards its sixth iteration, and we’ve pulled together an event spread over three weekends and presenting more than 750 artists, 22 exhibitions, two opera companies, two theatre companies, one puppet theatre company, one orchestra, and a community choir,” he said.
“The festival will showcase a powerhouse of headliners such as Laurie Anderson, St. Vincent, Alice Glass and Tanya Tagaq, who will lead the way on our usual mix of extreme, experimental and eclectic programming.
“It’s always difficult to know exactly how the festival will unfold for the audience.
“We just strive to try and find new ways to experience the darkness, and hope that people will continue to embrace it, and enjoy Hobart’s longest nights.”
Dark Mofo travel partner Spirit of Tasmania is offering a special Dark Mofo discount on select sails between Melbourne and Devonport.
After docking in Devonport, visitors can take the Dark Road to Hobart, which provides a curated guide for the state.
Dark Mofo is a project of Mona, supported by the state government through Events Tasmania.
For more information about what’s on at the festival or to book tickets, visit darkmofo.net.au.