Art After Dark

Fri 13th May, 2022 – Sat 14th May, 2022
6:00pm – 1:00am
Multiple locations
Price: Mostly free
Explore the NGV, ACMI and Melbourne Museum at night, catch a free show by Briggs and Kee’ahn, see the State Library’s dome illuminated with projections, and more over one huge weekend – all until 1am.

In Europe, more than 3000 museums in nearly 30 countries throw their doors open for a single night each year, with free entry for everyone. Now Melbourne is putting its own spin on the idea with an event called Art After Dark, showing the city’s museums and cultural institutions in a new light.

It’s taking place over one weekend – from 6pm to 1am on Friday and Saturday nights – with live music, new art installations, performances, food and drink experiences, and more to discover.

Remember the light projections in the State Library dome during White Night? The concept returns with a new 360-degree piece called Midnight at Pink Lake. Plus, the library is hosting wellbeing sessions and activities like mindfulness and bibliotherapy workshops, while roving performers move throughout the building.

The room of giant skulls that artist Ron Mueck presented at NGV Triennial 2017 is back, this time at the Ian Potter Centre, where there’ll also be poetry readings, choir performances and live DJ sets. Or head to NGV International to see the bluestone exterior transformed by light projections related to current exhibition Queer: Stories From the NGV Collection. Inside, watch an immersive video installation by artist Hannah Brontë, or explore all of the gallery’s exhibitions for free.

Over at Fed Square, there’s a free performance on Friday May 13 headlined by rapper Briggs, alongside singer-songwriter Kee’ahn, local DJ Soju Gang and neo-soul band Izy. Afterwards, stick around for the debut of Constellations, an Australian-first installation by light artist Joanie Lemercier, with an accompanying soundscape by producer Paul Jebanasam.

At Melbourne Museum, visit one of the most complete triceratops skeletons in the world, then check out light projections, food trucks, pop-up bars and live DJ sets. Imax is also screening Marvel blockbuster Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.

Plus, ACMI presents an exhibition by British artist Gillian Wearing, which explores memory and ageing, alongside Oskar Fischinger’s Raumlichtkunst, one of the first multimedia projections ever created (first shown in 1926). There are also free film screenings all night long, and interactive entertainment dedicated to local video game developers.

Arts Centre Melbourne is part of the action, too – catch a live show by Human Nature on Saturday May 14, or walk through the Australian Music Vault after dark with curators and tour guides. Out in the forecourt, listen to live DJ sets, grab a bite to eat from food trucks, or head down to one of the centre’s bars.

From 6pm to 1am both nights.