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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

NGV Triennial 2020

Expect giant mirrored sculptures by Jeff Koons, a pavilion made from trees that died during the Millennium Drought and a multi-sensory walkway.
By Libby Curran
November 30, 2020
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By Libby Curran
November 30, 2020
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Restrictions and lockdowns have meant many Melbourne art galleries have spent more time closed than open in 2020. But it seems the culture gods have smiled down and cut us a little slack when it comes to one of the biggest, most anticipated art events to hit the city in three years. With art galleries now able to begin reopening, the NGV Triennial is set to return for its blockbuster second iteration this summer, taking over NGV International from Saturday, December 19.

Held every three years, the Triennial made its huge debut in 2017, pulling a hefty 1.23 million visitors and remaining the NGV's most visited exhibition even today. Triennial 2020 looks set to follow suit, as artists from over 30 different countries share a diverse spread of works reflecting on a truly unique time in our world's history. Melbourne art lovers will be overwhelmed by the free large-scale exhibition of international contemporary art, design and architecture, showcasing 86 projects by more than 100 artists, designers and collectives.

Expect to see US artist Jeff Koons pay homage to the goddess of love Venus with a towering mirror-finished sculptural piece, while renowned interior designer Faye Toogood reimagines a series of gallery spaces with commissioned furniture, tapestries, lighting, sculpture and scenography. Turkey's Refik Anadol has put together a video work, capturing digitised memories of nature with help from artificial intelligence and machine learning. Meanwhile, a showcase by Yolngu woman Dhambit Mununggurr is replete with her trademark blue hues, including a set of 15 large-scale bark paintings. Lauded Japanese architect Kengo Kuma joins forces with Melbourne-based artist Geoffrey Nees, using timber from trees that died during the Millennium Drought at Melbourne's Royal Botanic Gardens to construct a pavilion. The structure will then feature as part of a multi-sensory walkway delivering audiences to a new piece by South Korean artist Lee Ufan.

If ever there was an exhibition worthy of your post-lockdown gallery-hopping debut, it's this.

Installation view of Refik Anadol Quantum Memories 2020 © Refik Anadol Photo: Tom Ross

Top image: Installation view of Porky Hefer, 'Plastocene – Marine Mutants from a disposable world' 2020, courtesy Southern Guild, Cape Town. Photo by Tom Ross.

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