‘Sip my Ocean’: Must-See Modern Art this Summer

‘Sip My Ocean’

Modern art. You probably love it or hate it. If you hate it, or, at the most are ambivalent towards it, I have an assignment for you. Check out ‘Sip my Ocean’, a special exhibition on until February 18th, 2018, at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA), Sydney. Featuring a curated collection of installations by Swiss artist Pipilotti Rist, this creative exhibit will make you think twice about what ‘modern art’ really is.

program guide-3
Exhibit program, with background info on each room.

In the words of MCA:

“Over the past 30 years, Pipilotti Rist (b.1962) has achieved international acclaim as one of the pioneers of experimental video art and multimedia installations. Incorporating video and sculpture, her dazzling environments plunge viewers into colourful kaleidoscopic projections which explore the relationship between nature, the body and technology.”

Expect feminism, nudity, colour, and new takes on things we take for granted, such as television, furniture and the home, and spatial relationships. Throughout the afternoon, I found myself lounging on the floor and on a twin bed, watching the art above, creating the illusion of being under water, bending and weaving to duck floating orbs, and meandering through a fairytale of sparkling lights. It’s dark and voyeuristic, yet also fun, unusual, and perhaps out of the comfort zone of some.

One of my favourite shots I’ve taken with my new camera- and it’s a sculpture made of underwear…

The installations wind through the 3rd floor of the museum in a darkened space, with hanging curtains creating almost secret entrances to different rooms. At some points I wasn’t actually sure if I was heading to another room of the exhibition, or just a blackened hallway, but that’s sort of part of the fun. I tried to follow along with the program, but then decided it’s more interesting to just experience it all, then figure it all out afterwards. It felt a bit like I was falling down the rabbit hole, until I popped out on the other end an hour or two after entering. 


I won’t try to describe it all, or even make sense of it, as I’ll leave that to the art critics, but I would definitely recommend, if you’re looking for something unique and inspiring to do over the summer holidays. I am always looking for fun and original things to do in Sydney, and this is one I would encourage everyone to check out!

The Exhibit in Photos

A message from the curator.
Feel like you’re under the sea (and perhaps a bonus for foot fetishists?)
Art installation or backpacking hostel?
A multi-media projection on the ceiling.


My favourite room.


See the small hole on the ground? Check it out when you’re there.



Top tips:

  • ‘Sip my Ocean’ is on until February 2018 at the MCA, Sydney, located in Circular Quay. Adult admission is $22.
  • There is detail in everything, to take your time to look over everything as much as you can.
  • Entry to the MCA is free (except for special exhibits, like this one), so check out the other floors while you’re there- they always have an amazing collection of paintings, sculptures, and installations that are both thought-provoking and beautiful.
  • A pop-up bar, ‘Colour Fields’ is open at MCA for the summer, and designed to tie in with this exhibit, but unfortunately was closed when I was there.  
  • If you bring a backpack, it needs to be worn on your front, as there are many fragile pieces of art in the collection.
Museum of Contemporary Art (The pop-up bar can be seen to the right.)

The writer visited the exhibit as a full-paying member of the public.

For more great things to do in Sydney this summer, check out some of other posts here and here. Have you visited the MCA lately? Would love to hear your thoughts below!


Leave a Reply