Dark Mofo isn’t all pretty lights and rum hot chocolates. It’s a blessed haven for the weird and wacky, the unusual, the eerie and the creepy… And it’s a whole lot of fun getting our freak on! Here are six of the quirkiest things at this year’s festival – things that were, things that are, and some things that have not yet come to pass.
Nude Solstice Swim
What better way to tip your hat to the shortest day of the year than to remove said hat, and all of your clothes, and go for a nice nude swim in the freezing waters of Long Beach, Sandy Bay? The fun happens at 7.42am on Wednesday 21 June. No doubt it will be nice and fresh!
More info (and registration): Nude Solstice Swim
Brigita Ozolins: Death Mask
Stare right into the silent faces of Tasmania’s convicts. Not their actual faces, but the next best thing – the death masks of executed criminals. The masks were created according to the nineteenth century pseudoscience of phrenology, which sought to decipher an individual’s personality traits and criminal proclivities through the shape of their skull. On until Wednesday 21 June at Narryna, Battery Point.
More info: Brigita Ozolins: Death Mask
This one is for all the curious cats who daydream about what might be lurking behind closed doors late at night. Cross the threshold into private societies, reclaimed venues, hotel rooms and sacred spaces, and discover a hidden community of late-night live music, sports and art. What will you happen upon while the city is supposed to be sleeping? It’s currently sold out, but there is a wait list.
More info: Welcome Stranger
The Second Woman
Over a twenty-four-hour period between 3pm Saturday 17 and 3pm Sunday 18 June, one hundred men are invited to star opposite the artist in a scene adapted from John Cassavetes’ American drama, Opening Night (1977). This one features artists Nat Randall, Anna Breckon, Nina Buchanan, Emily O’Connor and Future Method Studio. Come and go as you please – door sales $10, Peacock Theatre, Salamanca Arts Centre.
More info: The Second Woman
Mike Parr – Empty Ocean
Legendary Australian performance artist Mike Parr transformed Willow Court last year, and this year he ventured to Bruny Island, with volunteers! Silence is golden (as were the buckets of pee at Willow Court last year), and it was encouraged amongst participants and observers in the wee hours of Monday 12 June. During the performance, a mass of people sat in a grid, breaking the silence by banging quartz rocks together.
More info: Mike Parr – Empty Ocean
Maria Moles: Häxan
Witchcraft, devilry and persecution in the Middle Ages – all the ingredients for an interesting night out! On Thursday 15 June, experimental drummer Maria Moles conjured up a creepy live score for Benjamin Christensen’s 1922 silent film exploring these very topics, with the rare 16mm print supplied and projected by the National Film and Sound Archive of Australia at the Odeon Theatre.
More info: Maria Moles: Häxan