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Media Release • 3 Jan 19

Magic tricks and a doggy treasure hunt at the annual NGV Kids Summer Festival 2019

5 – 13 January 2018 | NGV International and The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia | FREE

Inspired by the NGV’s summer program, including Escher X nendo | Between Two Worlds and William Wegman: Being Human, this year’s NGV Kids Summer Festival focuses on the theme of Make Believe and encourages kids to harness the power of their imagination. Running from 5 – 13 January 2019, the Festival features hands-on art-inspired activities, workshops and performances across nine action-packed days, including a magic performance of mind-bending tricks and an expedition to discover dogs hidden in artworks across the NGV Collection.

Multi-award-winning magician, author and comedian, Nicholas J. Johnson will astound audiences of all ages with Deceptology. Playing on the optical illusions in M. C. Escher’s works, this performance explores the secrets of illusion and the psychological tricks that make our eyes deceive us. Johnson is the author of two best-selling novels about deception and trickery and was awarded for Best Comedy at the 2016 Melbourne Magic Festival.

To coincide with William Wegman: Being Human, families can explore the NGV Collection in an interactive quest for four-legged masterpieces. Using an activity sheet to uncover artworks featuring dogs, children can learn about the meaning behind dogs in art while completing fun challenges along the way. William Wegman has also collaborated with NGV Kids to create a collage and drawing activity starring the artist’s own beloved Weimaraners. Using a variety of media and the dogs’ expressive faces, children are able to create their own fantastical works of art.

For teens, Melbourne-based photographer and 2017 MECCA M-Power Scholarship recipient Atong Atem will lead a surreal photography workshop inspired by Polly Borland: Polyverse exhibition. Teens are invited to play with transformation and portraiture using a variety of household props and textiles to create their own DIY style photoshoot.

Kids and parents can also enjoy free screenings of Pixar’s classic film Up (2009). Japanese design studio nendo, whose work is featured in dialogue with the work of M. C. Escher in Escher X nendo | Between Two Worlds, selected this movie for its visually stunning depiction of life ‘between two worlds’. In this fantastical narrative, a 78-year-old balloon salesman and his young friend Russell fly to the South American wilderness in a house attached to thousands of helium balloons.

Other highlights include a hands-on activity where children can make their own 3D artworks inspired by M. C. Escher’s tessellation patterns, entertainer-led dance parties held in the Grollo Equiset Garden and a Relaxed Morning session of Escher X nendo | Between Two Worlds for visitors with autism, sensory sensitivities or disability to have a quieter Gallery experience.

Tony Ellwood AM, Director, NGV said, ‘The Gallery is committed to providing art activities to visitors of all ages. The NGV Kids Summer Festival promotes creativity and inspires learning through this dynamic program available to children, teens and their families.’

The 2019 NGV Kids Summer Festival is FREE and will run daily from Saturday 5 January to Sunday 13 January 2019. For further information please visit the website: NGV.MELBOURNE/KIDS.

Julian Opie: Studio for Kids is FREE and on display at NGV International until 17 February 2019.  Further information can be found on the NGV website: NGV.MELBOURNE/KIDS.

NGV Kids Summer Festival is generously supported by Krystyna Campbell-Pretty and the Campbell-Pretty Family, The Truby and Florence Williams Charitable Trust managed by Equity Trustees and Official Supplier, Canson Australia. NGV Teens is supported by The Ullmer Family Foundation.

The NGV warmly thanks The Truby and Florence Williams Charitable Trust, managed by Equity Trustees, the Neilson Foundation and the Packer Family Foundation for their generous support of Julian Opie: Studio for Kids.