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23rd Biennale of Sydney

The 23rd edition of Sydney's Biennale will feature a 600-metre-square bamboo structure, a huge mirrored pavilion and intricate portraits made out of grass.
By Sarah Ward
February 25, 2022
By Sarah Ward
February 25, 2022

Whenever the Biennale of Sydney hits town, it always makes a splash. Returning for its 23rd event in 2022, the Biennale's next huge celebration of art won't be any different. On the bill this year: portraits made out of grass, mirrored pavilions, a 600-square-metre bamboo structure and the sounds of 15,000 animals.

The 23rd Biennale of Sydney unveiled its full lineup at the beginning of February. And as proves the case every two years, it's about to be a great time to be an art-lover in Sydney. Running from Saturday, March 12–Monday, June 13, the complete Biennale program will present more than 330 artworks by 89 participants, plus 400 events, all linked to its central concept — which means 'stream' in Latin.

In terms of what you'll be able to check out at venues such as The Cutaway at Barangaroo Reserve, the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Circular Quay, Information + Cultural Exchange, Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, National Art School in partnership with Artspace, The Rocks and Walsh Bay Arts Precinct including Pier 2/3 across the city, it's a varied bunch.

A huge inclusion on the program comes from multidisciplinary studio Cave Urban, with the Sydney locals creating a work called Flow — which happens to be one of the largest bamboo structures ever produced in Australia. It's the studio's biggest-ever project, and will span 600 square metres through The Cutaway at Barangaroo. If all things shiny and mirrored appeal to you, Irish artist John Gerrard will be displaying a six-by-six metre LED wall on a polished mirrored pavilion, also at Barangaroo.

AGNSW will also play host to a wallpaper work in its entrance by Barkandji elder Badger Bates, which'll be based on one of his linocuts of the drying Lake Menindee; and to Naziha Mestaoui's One Beat, One Tree, which made its debut during the United Nations Climate Conference in 2015, and encourages folks engaging with the interactive piece to plant a virtual tree. At the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, there'll be large-scale tapestries from American artist Kiki Smith and the display of a 365-million-year-old fish fossil from Canowindra for the first time, while Pier 2/3 will feature 100 3D-printed replicas of Tasmanian stone tools thanks to Trawlwoolway artist Julie Gough.

Entry to the Biennale is free — and the event also includes a program of talks and experiences, called The Waterhouse, at The Cutaway at Barangaroo.

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