Part 35: MONA gallery and coming home

The last day of my travels! By this point I was very excited to return home to Wollongong! For my last day I went to the MONA  art gallery that so many people I had talked to had raved about. It was a rainy day and so what better than to spend it inside looking at art? It wasn’t the cheapest day in the world, but I bought in good faith with the belief that this place was mindbogglingly good. A guy I was talking to yesterday in the communal area had talked enthusiastically about it being better than the ones he had visited in Melbourne, London and New York! The gallery was accessed by ferry and when we docked it couldn’t have been better timing. I ran immediately inside the gallery and escaped the lightning and thunder happening over Mt. Wellington!

MONA ferry Hobart

MONA ferry Hobart

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Inside the gallery it was of course busy, I guess I wasn’t the only one who thought “rainy day = art gallery”. I walk around and in all honesty my heart sank with dissapointment. The art was extremely weird and (to me) pretensions. Everything I looked at was trying to be MOST weird and outragous, and it wasn’t really speaking to me beyond that initial look. It felt like the art was trying to hard, or that it was trying to be really deep and meaningful, when in fact it was more… Simple? I make my way through the rooms with different pieces, including piles of paper bags, screens with twirling flowers and poem reading, cat-piss smelling garfield piece, broken glass and (live) man with tattoos on his back sitting. It was very interactive and sensory, but throughout I felt myself cringing of the “trying to hard” aura from the artworks. It also felt like these artists behind the pieces were so mad, intense and creative in the way they viewed the world that only other mad people could understand them. Don’t get me wrong, I like modern art.. I just wasn’t feeling the art at the MONA gallery (maybe I just haven’t had enough exposure to that type?).

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I will give them this though! The Mona gallery was set in an underground building underground that was so beautifully designed. Sleek, modern rooms with clear cut sandstone rock walls and floors with understated steel and black painted wood set the tone! It felt like the inside of an Egyptian Faroe’s pyramid, and it was breathtaking. The rooms were endlessly massive and tall. I also enjoyed one piece of a massive metal head lying down. On his skull were windows you could peer into which showed the inside of the mind. Blinking lights, so many wires and different objects like birds fluttering, apples been made, screaming faces and books clasping birds highlighted the randomness that is our mind and subconsciousness as well as the many layers of emotion and thought. So beautifully done!

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On the way back on the boat I made friends with a middle aged couple from the UK who were cruising around Australia and Tasmania. When I arrived back at Hobart harbour I headed home to the hostel and packed my bags ready for my travels the next day. I made shuttle arrangments before settling down again infront of the tennis with others and watching Murray and Raonic!

The next morning it was hours and hors of flights and trains before I stepped over the doorstep to Shawnee and Max’s house where I was greeted by Steven! I unpacked my bag, did my washing and then went for the longest shower before I binged my computer and went to sleep. It took me a couple of days to realize that all my Australia travels were actually over and I was back in Wollongong again!

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