Melbourne Art Fair unveils 2024 program
Transitioning to an annual summer format, the 2024 Melbourne Art Fair is set to captivate audiences at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition (MCEC) from February 22 to 25, and is promising to be the event’s most ambitious program in its 35-year history.
More than 100 artists will showcase their work across the event, with a diverse line-up of interdisciplinary practices, performances, moving-image art, conversations and immersive installations.
Known as Australasia’s hub for contemporary art and ideas, more than 60 leading galleries and Indigenous art centres will be represented across the four-day event, with sectors of the fair being curated by a remarkable team of female curators such as Tamsin Hong, Shelley McSpedden and Anador Walsh.
“Melbourne Art Fair continues to hold an essential role in growing the Australian art market, representing the most comprehensive and considered overview of the region’s thriving contemporary art scene for 35 years,” Melbourne Art Foundation CEO and fair director Maree Di Pasquale said.
Having returned to MCEC in 2022 following a two-year hiatus due to the COVID pandemic, the 2024 program will include more than 50 events tied to the theme “ketherba/together”, emphasising a commitment to featuring significant works from both emerging and iconic artists.
As part of the program, the fair has commissioned two new major works, including renowned Australian artist Julie Rrap’s scultupural work, titled SOMOS (Standing On My Own Shoulders), which has been commissioned in partnership with the Art Gallery of Western Australia (AGWA).
“SOMOS (Standing On My Own Shoulders), is a bronze life-size sculptural work that is a dynamic composition in which both casts of my body are caught in a moment of action as one figure appears to support the other on its shoulders,” Ms Rrap said.
“While SOMOS echoes the ‘heroic’ tradition of bronze figurative sculpture, it subverts that history by representing an older female body traditionally rendered invisible.”
The commissioning program will also see a historic inclusion of a re-imagined piece from the renowned contemporary dance company Lucy Guerin Inc., marking the first instance of contemporary dance being featured in the program.
“We look forward to welcoming collectors, industry and the art loving public to the 17th edition of Melbourne Art Fair as the cultural event of the Australian summer and the official launch of the annual arts calendar,” Ms Di Pasquale said. •