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Dazzling Video Art at the MCA This Summer

August 3, 2017 Attraction No Comments Email Email

This summer, the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA) is proud to present a major new exhibition by pioneering Swiss artist Pipilotti Rist. 

Open from 1 November 2017 to 18 February 2018, Pipilotti Rist: Sip my Ocean is coming exclusively to Sydney as part of the Sydney International Art Series. Incorporating video and sculpture, Rist’s dazzling environments plunge viewers into colourful projections which explore the relationship between nature, the body and technology.

The exhibition presents the spectrum of Rist’s ground-breaking practice, from her early single-channel videos of the 1980s to her large-scale audio-visual installations and recent immersive environments. Her work is an ode to the heart and the intellect, to the big emotions that sustain us as human beings and to the beauty of the world and the universe around us.

The Sydney International Art Series brings the world’s most outstanding exhibitions exclusively to Sydney, Australia. Created by the NSW Government’s tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW, the Sydney International Art Series is a signature event on the NSW Events Calendar.

As one of the first generation of artists to grow up with televisions in their living rooms, Rist’s work references the history of new media, with her early videos presented on monitors and her recent works projected across ceilings, floors and walls. From the beginning Rist has been an innovator, readily engaging with advances in technology and new ways of making art. Her work reflects the symbiotic relationship between technology and biology, presenting both as an intrinsic part of human experience.

Occupying the entire third floor of the Museum, along with breakout works on the second and floor, the exhibition is choreographed as a sequence of different viewing experiences. Viewers are invited to sit down on oversized red sofas in Das Zimmer(The Room) (1994/2017); to walk through a magical forest of hanging lights in Pixelwald Motherboard > (2016), and a maze of floating fabric in Administrating Eternity (2011); or to lie down and look up at 4th Floor to Mildness (2016) and rest on the floor cushion to watch Lobe of the Lung (2009). Key works from Rist’s career form this exhibition including her earliest most well-known dual-channel video projections Sip my Ocean (1996) and Ever is Over All (1997).

MCA Director, Elizabeth Ann Macgregor OBE said: ‘Pipilotti Rist’s work was first shown at the MCA in 2001 in the exhibition Art/Music: Rock, Pop, Techno and in 2014 her work featured in the 19th Biennale of Sydney: You Imagine What You Desire, captivating people who sat mesmerised in the gallery for hours. We’re thrilled to continue our long-standing relationship with Rist for the Sydney International Art Series and to give our large and diverse audience the opportunity to see the most comprehensive exhibition of her work ever to be staged in Australia.’

Citi has been the Presenting Partner of the MCA’s Sydney International Art Series for four years, supporting the MCA in bringing to Sydney the work of some of the world’s leading artists. Citi Australia CEO, David Livingstone, said: ‘At Citi, we are passionate about bringing the best the world has to offer to Australia and opening doors to experiences that expand the way we view the world around us. Pipilotti Rist is one of the world’s most exciting contemporary artists, and Citi is proud to support the latest exhibition from this renowned pioneer of the art world.’

Exhibition curator and MCA Senior Curator, Natasha Bullock concluded: ‘Pipilotti Rist brings ideas and feelings together, and does so through the prism of video. Her imaginary worlds carve a unique vision, with all the attendant depth and weight of painting – an art form that has culturally sustained us, and our imaginations, for centuries. Rist, however paints with lights cameras and keyboards.’

Kunsthalle Krems 03/2015


Adult $22 / Concession $17 / Family $56 / Youth $12

Children under 12: Free

MCA Members: free unlimited entry

Sydney International Art Pass $37


The MCA has partnered with hip designer hotel QT Sydney to offer a ‘Pipilotti Rist Experience’ package. This offer starts from $440 per night and includes overnight accommodation in a QT King Deluxe, breakfast for two in Gowings Bar & Grill, a double pass to the exhibition and a cocktail for two at the MCA on arrival. Valid for stays between 1 November 2017 and 18 February 2018 on T&C apply.

Book a package through Qantas Holidays and see the Sydney International Art Series Pipilotti Rist: Sip my Ocean at the MCA and Rembrandt and the Dutch golden age: masterpieces from the Rijksmuseum at the AGNSW. From $289 per person twin share, the package includes 1 night at the Holiday Inn Old Sydney in a Standard Queen Room, full breakfast and a Sydney International Art Pass. Visit Terms & conditions apply.


Every Sunday, families are invited to get creative with free hands-on art-making activities and experiment with mirrored light and projections to create dream-like collages inspired by the artist’s practice. This unique drop-in program supports children and their grown-ups to play and learn together through open-ended play-based learning (FREE entry, open every Sunday 10.30am–4pm throughout the exhibition, excludes exhibition ticket).


Following on from the success of the Gin Garden and Cherry Blossom Bar in previous years, the MCA’s Summer Pop Up bar will return from 1 November, offering breathtaking sweeping views over Circular Quay and the Sydney Opera House. Taking a cue from the exhibition’s experience, the pop-up bar will be soaked in kaleidoscopic colour and offer a one-of-a-kind, insta-friendly experience. A bespoke cocktail and dining menu will be on offer by MCA’s catering partner Culinary Edge. Open to the public on Wednesdays to Sundays, the bar is also available for private hire, with special event and exhibition viewing packages available.


The Sydney International Art Series brings the world’s most outstanding exhibitions to Australia, exclusively to Sydney, every summer. The 2017–18 series will showcase two inspired exhibitions – Pipilotti Rist: Sip my Ocean at the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia and Rembrandt and the Dutch golden age: masterpieces from the Rijksmuseum at the Art Gallery of New South Wales. Purchase a Sydney International Art Pass to see both exhibitions and save 20%. Adult tickets $37, Concession / Member / Child $30 and Family $94.

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