The three major international artists coming to Sydney this summer

The Sydney International Art Series, which last summer brought Louise Bourgeois, Kandinsky and Tacita Dean to Australia, has announced a return for 2024–2025. Three more internationally renowned artists will exhibit exclusively in Sydney this summer, at the Art Gallery of New South Wales (AGNSW) and the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA).

The AGNSW will host two separate exhibitions. The first will be Magritte: a retrospective of Belgian surrealist René Magritte (1898–1967) and will feature over 100 works, from early drawings and rarely seen photographs to some of the most iconic and recognisable paintings of the 20th century. It will be the first retrospective dedicated to Magritte shown in Australia, with most of the works never having been seen in this country.

Opening alongside Magritte is Cao Fei: My City is Yours. Guangzhou-born, Beijing-based cyber-futurist artist Cao Fei (b1978) has been labelled one of the art world’s most influential people. Her multimedia work—which spans video, performance, and digital media—explores China’s rapid urbanisation, globalisation and technological transformation. My City is Yours will be Fei’s first Australian retrospective, and will be an interactive metropolis spanning 1300-square-metres of gallery space.

Cao Fei 'Nova' 2019, single-channel HD video, colour, 5.1 sound, 97:13 min, 2.35:1 © Cao Fei, Vitamin Creative. Courtesy Sprüth Magers.

The Museum of Contemporary Art has announced their summer show will be the first major survey in the Southern Hemisphere of influential artist Julie Mehretu. Born in Ethiopia and based in New York, Mehretu creates monumental paintings layered with material and meaning, and has been described by the New York Times as “one of today’s most original and thought-provoking painters”. Julie Mehretu will feature over 80 paintings from 1995 to the present, including some new works created for the exhibition.

“Julie Mehretu, René Magritte and Cao Fei are three of the most recognised and influential artists of their respective generations,” says NSW Minister for Tourism and the Arts, John Graham. “I’m pleased that art lovers will be able to enjoy them in Sydney next summer. The three exhibitions under the Sydney International Art Series 2024-25 program reflect our ambition to ensure Sydney is a global cultural hub where art and creativity is celebrated, a place where locals and visitors can experience the most exciting and cutting-edge cultural offerings, from around Sydney, NSW, Australia and the world.”

Art Gallery of New South Wales (AGNSW)
26 October 2024—9 February 2025

Cao Fei: My City is Yours
Art Gallery of New South Wales (AGNSW)
30 November 2024—13 April 2025

Julie Mehretu
Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA)
29 November 2024—27 April 2025

News Words by Art Guide Australia