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Melbourne Art Week​

500 + Artists | 50 + Events | 30 + Venues

Melbourne Art Foundation has joined with over 50 Victorian cultural organisations, institutions, art spaces, satellite fairs and galleries to stage Melbourne Art Week (30 July-5 August 2018); a dynamic program of exhibitions, events, talks, performances and workshops that will take place across Melbourne this winter. 

Melbourne Art Fair returns from 2-5 August 2018 (Vernissage, 1 August) as the main event of Art Week and will be housed for the first time across two venues within the Southbank Arts Precinct and alongside ACCA; Vault Hall and Riding Hall.

Other Art Week highlights include the Visual Arts Awards (Saturday 4 August), From Will to Form: Tarrawarra Biennial 2018; ACCA: A Lightness of Spirit is the Measure of Happiness, Buxton Contemporary: No One is Watching You: Ronnie van Hout, VCA Open Studios + more. 

MLC Life Insurance​ Commission

Melbourne Art Foundation continues to support contemporary art and living artists through its presentation of Melbourne Art Week. This year, the Foundation has joined with 2018 Associate Partner, MLC Life Insurance to commission a new work from Japanese-born, Australian-based artist Hiromi Tango entitled Lizard Tail (Dawn), to visually represent Melbourne Art Week 2018. 
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The Melbourne Art Week Keynote is co-presented by the University of Melbourne and 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, and supported by Fed Square. 

Philip Tinari, Director of Ullens Centre for Contemporary Art (UCCA), Beijing

Prior to joining UCCA, Tinari launched LEAP, an internationally distributed, bilingual magazine of contemporary art published by the Modern Media Group, in 2009. He is a contributing editor of Artforum, and was founding editor of that magazine’s Chinese edition in 2007. Widely regarded as an authority on China’s contemporary art scene, he was co-curator, with Alexandra Munroe and Hou Hanru, of the 2017 exhibition “Art and China after 1989: Theater of the World” at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York. 

Keynote | FREE | Tuesday 31 July 2018 6.30pm | Deakin Edge, Fed Square 


The Melbourne Art Foundation and the University of Melbourne, Learning Partner of Melbourne Art Week, present Talks 2018: Space of Friendship.

Talks promotes discussion, education and interest in contemporary art practice in Australia and the Asia Pacific region, and will include interviews, talks and panels with a range of speakers including artists, curators, collectors and critics covering topics and issues relevant to the global art market. 

Thursday 2 – Sunday 5 August 2018
Federation Hall
Grant Street, Southbank, University of Melbourne (opposite Melbourne Art Fair)

Talks is free to attend. Registration essential.


Talks Curatorial Committee:

Su Baker, Artist and Pro-Vice Chancellor (Engagement)
Professor Charles Green, Contemporary Art, School of Culture and Communication
Natalie King, Curator and Enterprise Professorial Fellow, Victorian College of the Arts
Dr Sean Lowry, Head of Critical and Theoretical Studies in Art, Victorian College of the Arts
Dr Rachel Marsden, Curator and Lecturer in Curatorship
Dr Meredith Martin, Associate Director, Cultural and Public Engagement in Chancellery
Professor Nikos Papastergiadis, Director, Research Unit in Public Cultures and Professor, School of Culture and Communication
Professor Claire Roberts, Art Historian, Australian Research Council (ARC) future Fellow and Associate Professor of Art History, School of Culture and Communication
Mikala Tai, Director, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Sydney

Learning Partner 


Foundation Commission

The Melbourne Art Foundation Commission provides a living artist with an opportunity to realise a large-scale work for unveiling at Melbourne Art Fair. 

The 2018 Commission by Bendigo Art Gallery in partnership with the Melbourne Art Foundation and supported by Artwork Transport, has been awarded to prominent New Zealand born, Melbourne-based artist Ronnie van Hout. Commissioned for the first time in partnership with a regional Victorian institution, the ambitious large-scale work will be unveiled and exhibited at Melbourne Art Fair before moving to its permanent home at Bendigo Art Gallery.

Ronnie van Hout is represented by STATION (Melbourne) and Darren Knight Gallery (Sydney). 

Encompassing sculpture, installation, photography, video and more, his work treads the line between humour and the macabre. Throughout his career van Hout has pursued warped renditions of the self-portrait genre, using his own body as both subject and material. In his work, the body often becomes fragmented, disfigured and alien – yet never relinquishes its comedic inflection. An uncanny proxy, van Hout’s body is both a site of and prop within absurdist narratives leaden with metaphoric entanglements and black humour. 

Previous partners in the program include institutions NGV, QAGOMA, the University of Queensland Art Museum, MCA, Art Gallery of South Australia, and the National Gallery of Australia; and artists such as Michael Parekowhai, David Griggs, Peter Hennessey, Jon Campbell, Ian Burns, and Mikala Dwyer.

Visual Arts Awards

The biennial Visual Arts Awards celebrate excellence in the Australian visual arts. The 2018 Awards will take place on Saturday 4 August at ACCA. Tickets include drinks, live performance art and a DJ Set from NO ZU (pictured). 

Nominations close 9 July. 

Adult $55 / Concession $50 

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Young Artist Award
In 2015, Melbourne Art Foundation introduced an accolade for a young artist. The Young Artist Award is bestowed on an artist under 35 and seeks to support the next generation of artistic practice with a cash prize of $5,000 supported by Artwork Transport. Past Recipient, Daniel Boyd (2015).  

Artist Award
Recognising the outstanding achievement of an Australian artist for a comprehensive body of work produced within the last 2 years. The 2018 recipient will receive a $10,000 cash prize supported by ST. ALi.

Past Recipients include Bill Henson (2015), Patricia Piccinini (2014), Fiona Hall (2011). 

I AM GEORGE Curator Award

The inaugural Curator Award celebrates the extraordinary, acknowledging a daring Australian curator who has forged their own path and made an outstanding and sustained contribution to Australian visual art. The recipient will receive a $5,000 cash prize, supported by I AM GEORGE.

Nominations close 9 July