LOCAL BEAT – APRIL: Art and Culture

Today we bring you a selection of the best exhibitions, cultural events, and art pieces to check out in the city of Sydney during the month of April.

Caricature, Art, Amateur, FIB, Australian art
The 2017 Bald Archy Prize Winner. Image credit: Bald Archy Prize

Bald Archy Prize

the Bald Archy Prize is an Australian prize which provides artists of diverse styles and standards with a genuine opportunity to express their sense of humour. From hilarious to dark satire or bizarrely vulgar art pieces; this prize is about making fun and at the same time making a social critique of popular Australian personas.

Oh, and we mustn’t forget the fact that the judge in this competition – which includes both professional and amateur artists – is no other than a cockatoo named Maude. The exhibition will reside in the Sofitel Darling Harbour Hotel until the 22nd of April and is a must see!

Underworld: Mugshots from the roaring twenties

Dive into the underworld of 1920’s Sydney; this photographic exposé tells the story of Sydney’s police force in pictures. Meet the bosses, killers, bruisers, and plotters that ruled the streets of Sydney at the time. The candid and compelling pictures from the era have a lush quality due in part to the use of glass paint negative which provides immense realism. The photography exhibit will be featured at the Museum of Sydney until 12th August.

Criminal, Photography, Sydney Police, 1920, Underworld
Image credit: Sydney Living Museums

Marikit Santiago: Coca-Colanised

Following on from the Weave Aboriginal Festival, which ended last week in Sydney, Marikit Santiago is showing an exhibit based on “Coca-Colonised”,  a term she coined to explain the Americanization of the world through popular products such as Coca-Cola. Through this exhibition the Australian, of Filipino ethnicity, opens the floor to discussion around colonial occupation in the Philippines and subsequent attitudes conditioned by a Western presence in a developing world. Go check it out at the Verge Gallery before April 7th. Hurry, only one week left!

Colonization, Philippines, COCA-COLA, Americanization, Sydney
Coca-Colanised art piece. Image credit: Coffa Annual art design

Before Sunset: The Bank and World War I

The Reserve Bank of Australia is commemorating the role of the Commonwealth Bank during the rough days of War. This temporary exhibition reveals the first days of the bank and how it was selected by the Government to raise funds for the construction of war service homes and the provision of vocational training for ex-servicemen, war widows and nurses. The imagery is worth viewing, especially because it highlights the enormous change in function of banking from a service to a self-serving business. The exhibit will be up until the end of the year so you guys have plenty of time to go and check it out.

Refugees, Art, Chinese artist, Biennale sydney
The Law of the Journey at the 21st Biennale of Sydney

Cool Art pieces in Sydney

Critically acclaimed and controversial Chinese artist Ai Wei Wei has installed a 60-meter-long inflatable boat on Cockatoo Island as a confronting comment on the global refugee crisis. The inflated statute is called The Law of the Journey and is a part of the 21st Biennale of Sydney. The art pieces of the city-wide art festival will be displayed until 11th June. Another piece worth checking out is The Apocalypse Tapestry of Darlinghurst, which  uses middle age religious imagery to question notions of equality, damnation and the enduring human spirit.

How are you getting cultural during the packed month of April? Leave a comment below!