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The Museum of Everything

The world's first dedicated showcase of ordinary art is heading to MONA for its first Australian visit.
By Sarah Ward
April 27, 2017
By Sarah Ward
April 27, 2017

The world's first wandering institution dedicated to showcasing the creative efforts of ordinary folks is coming to Australia. That'd be the The Museum of Everything, which will head to Tasmania for a ten-month stint filled with pieces that you won't find in any other gallery.

Launching during MONA's Dark Mofo in June, then running through until April 2, 2018, the exhibition will feature over 1500 works in themed spaces, taking visitors on an informal journey through human making. Drawings, sculptures, paintings, ceramics, collage, photography, assemblage, found objects and installations will all be on display during its first trip to our shores.

Starting in London in 2009, and touring to Paris, Venice, Moscow and Rotterdam since, The Museum of Everything aims to improve the profile of art that falls outside of the usual channels. Forget famous names — you won't find them here. Instead, lining its walls are works crafted by untrained, unintentional, undiscovered and and otherwise unclassifiable artists from the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries.

Indeed, the people responsible for the kind of pieces favoured by the travelling display are compelled to channel their creativity into new, different and experimental works, but they don't fit the conventional definition of artists. As founder James Brett explains, "our artists do not create for the markets or museums. They make because they must and— from Henry Darger to Nek Chand Saini — have something vital to say about the essence of their lives".

Image: George Widener, c. 2007, courtesy of The Museum of Everything.

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