It’s a place to be challenged; it’s confronting, and it’s certainly unique – MONA (Museum of Old and New Art) is located in Hobart, Tasmania, Australia.
It is a new concept of art gallery – the building is built around the sandstone cliffs on the edge of the Derwent River. Located on 8 acres, and boasting a winery, numerous cafes, restaurants, and luxurious accommodation; MONA is the largest private museum in Australia. Eccentric David Walsh, the owner and creator lives on-site and can often be seen greeting visitors, or wondering the grounds with another member of the elite art community. During summer months MONA hosts a array of festivals and music concerts.
There are two ways to reach MONA – either a 15 min drive from the Hobart CBD, or the “Mona-roma” catamaran. The “Mona-roma” collects passengers from the Hobart Waterfront and provides a spectacular journey along the Derwent River, before docking at MONA’s own jetty.
The “O” (loaded onto a iPod) is used rather than having any printed descriptions next to the artwork. Using the application, you can save your favourites which will later be emailed to you.
The MONA concept is to offend you, be controversial, and challenge you. If too many people “like” something, then it will be removed. This is perfect for repeat visitors, since the galleries are always changing.
(“Fat Car” – Ferrari)
MONA appeals to all your senses – sight, sound and smell. The art even continues to the restrooms – trust me, visit the third toilet on the right hand side, for a truly unique experience. Going to the bathroom will never be the same again!
Although some would find MONA distasteful, there is no excusing the fact that this concept is simply brilliant. You wouldn’t make the trek to Hobart without seeing what all the fuss, hype and controversy is all about. You will be offended. You will be challenged. But, you will have visited MONA.