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Get your culture fix up late in Sydney this summer

Published: 16 December 2020
Released by: Minister of State

Sydneysiders will be able to get their culture up late over summer, as major arts and cultural institutions keep their doors open longer and welcome visitors to blockbuster exhibitions and events.

From January to March 2021, the Art Gallery of NSW, Australian Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art, Powerhouse Museum, State Library of NSW, and Sydney Living Museums will leave the lights on for visitors at least one night a week, and Sydney Opera House will offer new evening tours and special programming, for Culture Up Late.

Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said the government was focused on bringing people back to the city to support businesses and jobs and restore Sydney city’s cultural life.

“The NSW Government has committed $1.47 million to supporting the extended opening hours across our major arts and cultural institutions, which is just one of many initiatives designed to draw people back to the CBD over the coming months.

“Sydney’s city centre has been one of the biggest casualties of the pandemic, but as the weather warms up and more people start to get out and about, Culture Up Late will give Sydneysiders the opportunity to visit exhibitions straight after work, well beyond the standard closing time.

“It’s been a tough year, and I encourage anyone who can, to get out and immerse yourself each week this summer in all that the country’s largest arts and cultural institutions have to offer,” said Mr Perrottet.

Minister for the Arts, Don Harwin said the Culture Up Late initiative will give Sydney-siders and local visitors more time explore the exciting exhibitions and events on offer across the city.

“The arts and cultural sector is important for our economic recovery and for the community’s wellbeing. Sydneysiders and visitors will now have even more opportunities to experience the offerings at our arts and cultural institutions.

“Expect the unexpected with the MCA, view new exhibitions Coming Out in the 70s and Sydney Morning Herald Photos1440 at the State Library of NSW, take an evening tour behind the scenes at the Sydney Opera House, and discover the stories of the Hyde Park Barracks through a self-guided immersive experience that will take you back in time.

“Come face-to-face with a life-sized Tyrannosaurus Rex at the newly renovated Australian Museum, view Arthur Streeton’s brilliant evocations of light, land and sea at the Art Gallery of NSW, browse the largest retrospective of Australia’s leading guitar manufacturer at the Powerhouse Museum, and immerse yourself in the Paradise on Earth exhibition at the Museum of Sydney.

“There really is something for everyone, and I encourage you to get your culture fix up late this summer in Sydney,” Mr Harwin said.

Culture Up Late will run from January to March 2021. Check participating institutions’ website for individual start dates and specific programming: 

  • Art Gallery of NSW – Wednesdays, 5-9pm (Streeton closes 14 February) 
  • State Library of NSW – Wednesdays and Thursdays, 5-8pm 
  • Australian Museum – Thursdays, 5-9pm 
  • Powerhouse Museum – Thursdays, 5-9pm 
  • Museum of Contemporary Art – Fridays, 5-9pm 
  • Sydney Living Museums – Hyde Park Barracks Museum: Thursdays and Fridays 5-9pm; Museum of Sydney: Fridays to Sundays 5-9pm 
  • Sydney Opera House – new evening tours and special programming across January, February and March 2021 
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