First Look: Melbourne Is Getting a New Multi-Sensory Cocktail Exhibition You Can Sip Your Way Through

The Australian-first 'Art of Mixology' has commissioned six celebrated artists to reimagine various cocktails as immersive, interactive installations.
Libby Curran
Published on February 14, 2023

It's no secret that when it comes to cocktails, Melbourne can mix it with the best. In the past year alone, the Victorian capital has been named among Punch's top five global drinking destinations for 2023, Bar Liberty's Nick Tesar took out the title of Australia's Best Bartender and CBD bar Caretaker's Cottage nabbed a spot in the latest edition of The World's 50 Best Bars extended 51–100 list.

So what more fitting place to host Australia's groundbreaking new immersive cocktail exhibition, Art of Mixology? Transforming Southbank's Kingpin into an interactive gallery space from Friday, March 3–Sunday, March 12, the showcase is set to serve up a heady fusion of art and drink design that'll shine a fresh light on the world of cocktail making.

It's being brought to life with the help of award-winning production agency VANDAL and R L Foote Design Studio.


Gracing the adults-only exhibition are works by six renowned local artists, who've each been commissioned to reimagine a different cocktail as a signature installation, complete with striking visuals, soundscapes and other interactive elements.

Among them are interdisciplinary digital artist ​​Mikaela Stafford (whose vibrant works have appeared at the Tate Modern), celebrated artist and food designer Ryan L Foote, and projections maestro and White Night regular Nick Azidis.

Mikaela Stafford

Making your way through Art of Mixology, you'll encounter their creative interpretations of various Kingpin cocktails, resulting in everything from large-scale sculptures and visual illusions through to aromatic bubbles floating through the space. Highlighted drinks include a lychee rose martini, the Zombie and the elegant Butterfly Flower.

The exhibition is designed to be explored as you would a giant interactive cocktail menu, pondering each concoction and its ingredients before settling on your chosen sip. Of course, along with the visuals and other sensory details, your tastebuds are in for a treat here — each of the six featured cocktails will be available for visitors to enjoy while they're soaking up the art.

Tickets come in at $20, which includes your choice of one signature cocktail (or booze-free alternative). You can purchase more drinks while you're there, too.


Kingpin's Butterfly Flower

Art of Mixology will run from Friday, March 3–Sunday, March 12 at Kingpin, 8 Whiteman St, Southbank. Tickets are $20, available online.

Published on February 14, 2023 by Libby Curran
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