The Weird, Wacky and Wonderful Art You Don’t Want to Miss at MONA

best things to see at mona

MONA is the legendary museum in Hobart, Tasmania, started by David Walsh, who, in his words, helped him “bang above his weight.” If there ever was a reason to spend millions of dollars and create Australia’s largest private museum, then I guess Walsh found it.

The museum, which has gained attention from around the world, is no ordinary museum. The sub-level structure is an architectural marvel, which started as Walsh’s private house. Still, it has now become a maze of underground tunnels, airy, colourful extensions, and a monument to art.

Inside, the walls are constantly changing, but visitors can expect to be shocked, confused, and impressed by the art, restaurants, and other spaces. Think of a really expensive kitchen garden, a nice spot to listen to live music, and even a place to tie the knot.

The general collection houses 1900 pieces and counting, and all art goes through the revolving door, but here are the weirdest, wackiest, awe-inspiring artworks to see on your next visit to MONA—if it’s still there when you go.


This art installation from Richard Wilson was created in 1987 and now lives in MONA. You can walk out to the point, which reveals a depthless surface. The installation is built out of sump oil and steel. The artwork explores reflections and optical illusions. It’s seriously trippy and has become famous for good reason.


Bit.fall is a waterfall that writes out Google’s top word searches of the day with every fall. Created by Julius Popp, this impressive artwork is definitely one to add to the list. It’s also right near the entrance so you can’t miss it.

best things to see at mona
Photo: Mona/Jesse Hunniford

Beside Myself

Walk along a narrow path illuminated by bright lights, giving the illusion there is a wall on either side.

best things to see at mona
Photo: Mona/Jesse Hunniford

Event Horizon

James Turrell’s, Event Horizon is a stunning art experience where one enters a room, and all sense of space is lost. The room looks like a projected screen on the wall, but inside, the corners disappear, and distance becomes a faded concept. It’s an incredible experience.

best things to see at mona


This is another of Turrell’s insane installations. During sunrise and sunset, the artwork lights up, harnessing the potential of light and space.

best things to see at mona
Photo: Mona/Jesse Hunniford

Unseen Seen

If you can’t already tell, any Turrell artwork is worth the time. This particular one is a giant white orb, which you can step inside and experience nothingness. Choose a hard or soft mode for different atmospheres.

Ladies Lounge

Sorry men, this one is for the ladies only. We won’t give away too much, but let’s just say the ladies’ lounge is everything you expect of a lounge area just for ladies.

best things to see at mona
Photo: Mona/Jesse Hunniford

Cunts…and other conversations

This artwork made a lot of noise when it was first unveiled. The controversies were probably why Walsh secured it for his private collection. It’s confronting but beautiful to see.

Cloaca Professional

We did mention MONA is known for the weird and whacky. Cloaca Professional is an artwork by Belgium artist Wim Delvoye. This piece looks at digestion via machine. At 11 am, they feed the machine, and around 2 pm, you can watch it poop. It gets pretty crowded—be warned, it smells.

Phase Shifting Index

Part science-fiction documentary, part psychedelic meltdown, this multi-channel video work depicts humans engaged in various forms of group. The movements include tai chi and hardcore rave. The artist Jeremy Shaw’s vision forms the basis for a new system of belief—one governed by gesture and body.

Exodust—Crying Country

Exodust—Crying Country is a collaborative exhibition project from the celebrated Sydney-born and Hobart-based artist Fiona Hall, and AJ King, a Bigambul / Wakka Wakka cultural practitioner. A large timber hut—scorched inside and out—appears amid a scene of environmental devastation, reminiscent of a fire-bombed logging coupe.

best things to see at mona
Photo: Mona/Jesse Hunniford

Within an utterance

Within an utterance, sees Andrew collaborate with Pakana curator Zoe Rimmer, Aboriginal linguistic consultant Theresa Sainty, and cultural burning practitioner and Wakka Wakka man Luke Mabb. The exhibition also responds to the physical site of Mona, which is dotted with twelve shell middens.

How to Get to MONA

Getting to MONA is as easy. Hop on board the high-speed catamaran—the Mona Roma—which sails between Hobart’s Brooke Street Pier and Mona. The sail takes around 25 minutes one way and only costs $25. There’s also a posh pit for those who want to escape the crowds and settle into a private lounge with a bar and deck. The posh pit includes free drinks, tiny food and inflated egos. A one-way ticket will set you back $60. Book here.

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