The Carriageworks’ 2018 program is here, and promises more of the sights, sounds, tastes and artistic sensations the venue is famous for. The year ahead will draw in towering large-scale installations, as well as opera, theatre, performance art, night markets, innovative conferences, dance, dining and film. To number crunch: the venue will present 70 projects, including 10 world premieres, 17 international works and 17 new Australian commissions.

“Over the past five years we’ve really been building on our artistic program and investing more into new commissions and new works,” says Carriageworks director Lisa Havilah. “The scale keeps getting bigger – it’s really important for an institution like Carriageworks that our program continues to grow along with our support of artists.”

The year kicks off with Katharina Grosse – and the month-long installation of her epic immersive painting – involving more than 8,250 square metres of suspended fabric – has already begun. Drenched in Grosse’s signature rainbow of spray paint, the piece is titled The Horse Trotted Another Couple Of Metres, Then It Stopped, and is her first major Australian commission.

Carriageworks favourite, Japanese artist Ryoji Ikeda, will also return to the venue in July. Following test pattern [No.5] and superposition at Carriageworks – and the quiet installation of a permanent 100-metre long Ikeda mural in the foyer of the Sydney ICC – we’ll see more of Ikeda’s long dive into the dense space between art and quantum physics with Macro Micro.

Nick Cave (the artist) is also due back at Carriageworks in 2018. This year, we experienced his jubilant, wearable dancing horse sculptures – in November next year, Cave will present Until. First shown at the Massachusetts Museum of Modern Art last month, the intricate, cave-like installation is made up of thousands of beads, crystals, chandeliers, lawn ornaments, mirrored wind chimes, several gilded pigs and a crocodile.

Carriageworks will also expand on its support and development of local artists and companies. In February, Carriageworks’ residents Contemporary Asian Australian Performance will present The Backstories – a solo performance by soccer star Moya Dodd. Sydney Chamber Opera – another of the venue’s resident companies – will present Howling Girls, an opera slash slow-motion panic attack, based on the weeks following the September 11 terrorist attacks in New York City.

Sydney Chamber Opera are also scheduled to present Resonant Bodies – a two-day festival of vocal art, imported from New York City. Presented in September, it will feature a number of local and international experimental vocalists.

Throughout the year, the venue will also play host to some of the city’s key art and culture happenings – Mardis Gras, the 21st Biennale of Sydney, Sydney Contemporary art fair, and Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia, to name a few. Carriageworks will also be the home of the ever-expanding Sydney Writer’s Festival for the first time.

To celebrate the 40th anniversary of Mardi Gras, Carriageworks will host a one night only Vogue-ing ball, and a series of talks and forums on queer thinking. There’ll also be Black Nulla Cabaret as part of Koori Gras, presented by resident company Moogahlin Performing Arts.

In October, the biannual Black Arts Market will return, showcasing a great range of rare arts and crafts from south-east Australian Indigenous arts practice. Following an exceptional 2017 edition, Performance Space’s performance art spectacular Liveworks is also billed for October.

The Clothing Store residencies will carry into next year too. We’ll also see more Saturday morning produce markets, and more of the smoky, fragrant and bustling Night Market series, featuring some of Sydney’s most delicious food and beverage vendors.

And there’s still more to come. In January, Carriageworks is due to introduce 10 new food events led by ambassadors Kylie Kwong and Mike Mcenearney. There’ll be masterclasses, dinners, live cooking demonstrations and more.

Tickets for the 2018 Carriageworks season go on sale on Tuesday November 18 at 9am.

carriageworks.com.au