Mona – the Museum of Old and New Art
Mona, the Museum of Old and New Art, is the playground and megaphone of Mona creator David Walsh, who grew up in Tasmania (just down the road from Mona), dropped out of uni, played cards, won, did some other stuff, and opened a small museum of antiquities, to which no one came. He declared it a triumph and decided to expand.
The result is Mona: a subterranean labyrinth showcasing the highlights (and lowlights) of David’s private collection; and a temple to secularism, rationalism, and the messy machinery of human nature. It’s David’s experiment. We need art, he contends. But for what? Mona is a museum of ideas as much as it is a gallery of art and antiquities.
All that sounds pretty lofty. You’ll soon discover that at Mona, you’re mainly encouraged to have fun. Settle in at the bar. Have a drink. Contemplate signing up for the Eternity Membership: parties, free stuff and a place in the on-site cemetery when you die.
Mona is also home to the Moorilla vineyard, winery and cellar door, an off-site craft brewery (called Moo Brew), eight luxury accommodation dens overlooking the river, a library of some 14,000 titles from David’s collection, several restaurants and bars, a cafe, function centre, cinema, and tennis court, which is pretty random. There’s live music on site every weekend, and two festivals: Mona Foma in January and Dark Mofo in June.
The best way to get to Mona is by their high-speed camouflaged catamaran, which departs regularly from Brooke Street Pier on the Hobart waterfront. Sail in cattle class (onboard bars and sheep to sit on) or in the luxe surrounds of the Posh Pit (private bar and deck, plus complimentary canapés, Moorilla and Moo Brew, and inflated egos). Twenty-five minutes one way.
Mona, the Museum of Old and New Art
Open Wednesday - Monday, 10am - 5pm (until 6pm in summer)
Museum entry $28 / $25
Free for Tasmanians and under 18s
Standard ferry ticket $22 return / Posh Pit ferry ticket $55 return
As of 29 July 2018, SkyBus is now providing fast and reliable airport connection to Hobart for $18.50 online! SkyBus is departing every 30 minutes kerbside at the airport and jetting directly to MONA ferry terminal at Brooke Street Pier.
If you would like to drop your bags off and relax at your hotel, SkyBus has conveniently located stops around Hobart CBD. Alternatively, Brooke Street Pier has allocated luggage storage on the berth deck when you board the Mona ferry, if you wanted to jump on SkyBus and head straight to the ferry terminal so you can view the latest exhibition.