Work for it: Dark MoFoThe cold-weather spinoff of the renowned MONA FOMA (MoFo) festival, put on by Hobart’s boundary-pushing Museum of Old and New Art (MONA), is not for the faint of heart: Over the course of a week, there’s eye-opening music and art, bonfires, a naked polar swim, a Paganesque winter feast, and an all-night, anything-goes dance party.
Museum of Old and New Art
This unusual contemporary-art museum is located in a series of dimly lit caverns and tunnels built into the side of a cliff in Berriedale, a Hobart suburb. Inside, mind-bending installations include a stinky model of the human digestive system that poops daily at 2 p.m. Founder David Walsh, a professional gambler turned art maven, displays more than 400 edgy works from his private collection. Walsh also stages two standout annual festivals: Mona Foma (which stands for Festival of Music and Art, sometimes further shortened to Mofo) in January, curated by Brian Ritchie of the rock band Violent Femmes, and Dark Mofo, the winter version held in June.
Relax: MONA Pavilions Hotel
Hobart’s thriving arts scene got even more impressive in 2011 with the opening of Mona (Museum of Old and New Art). Renowned as one of the best contemporary-art museums in the world, the extraordinary private collection is the brainchild of Hobart local David Walsh, who amassed his fortune by professional gambling. The three-floor subterranean structure showcases Walsh’s collection of controversial art pieces and installations. Catch the ferry from Hobart's waterfront for the 30-minute ride right to the steps of the museum.