It's not you, it's me: LOVE open later until the relationship ends 28 April
Due to popular demand, Immigration Museum's Love exhibition is now open later on Thursdays until 7pm. There will be a bar, a playlist of all-Australian love songs and a new display of objects from Mirka Mora's collection recently acquired by Museums Victoria at auction.
In a little over five weeks the Immigration Museum is breaking up with Love.
There will be no ghosting, no arguments and no pain. Just cherished memories of what was: visitors sharing their own love stories in the Heart Garden, couples making out between the 19th-century columns of the gallery, customer service staff keeping the tissues on hand in case of tears...
So far the Immigration Museum has shared the love with almost 45,000 visitors. In fact, the Love effect has seen a 21% boost to the museum's visitation numbers.
But the relationship with Love won't end without five last date nights.
Every Thursday the museum is opening until 7pm and is encouraging visitors to bring a date – a lover, a crew of friends, their whole family or the Internet crush they're still not sure about.
Love seekers can enjoy a drink at the bar within the grandeur of the 19th-century Palazzo-style piano nobile of Customs House and enjoy a playlist of all-Australian love songs. After a tipple, they can grab an audio guide and head into the neon-lit, blush-bathed exhibition, for an intimate and personal experience which explores love in all its joyous, illogical, heart-breaking and tender glory.
Visitors may like to keep an eye out for the soft-sculpture doll created by Mirka Mora. On loan from exhibition partner Heide Museum of Modern Art, it is a symbol of unconditional love, grief and comfort that portrays Mora's sadness in being away from her cherished sons.
From 28 March, a new display featuring a selection of items acquired by Museums Victoria at the recent Mirka Mora Studio auction will include an unfinished embroidered artwork, sewing box, art cases, and an inscribed copy of the first book Mora bought in English. This latter object is an evocative migration object, reminding visitors that Mora started out life in Melbourne like so many post-war migrants, in an unfamiliar city, speaking a different language and carrying the grief of war.
Similar to Heide Museum of Modern Art's campaign to keep a significant portion of Mirka's most treasured possessions in a public collection, Museums Victoria was able to secure over 40 items for the State Collection enabling it to both preserve and present the wonderful life of Mirka Mora.
Dr Moya McFadzean, Senior Curator of Migration and Diversity who co-curated Love and who led the acquisition of these objects said that these items bring the personal side of Mirka to life. "Mirka is a figure who embodied the spirit of bohemian Melbourne for decades and it is so exciting to be able to preserve and share these objects with visitors that she herself owned, used and touched. These items provide insights into Mirka's personal life as a post-World War II migrant and leader within Melbourne's artistic community, as well as her artistic practise, influences and personal style," McFadzean said.
Rohini Kappadath, General Manager at Immigration Museum said that Love is an exploration of a universal emotion that connects us all, and is an exciting signifier of things to come at the museum.
"Love reflects the Immigration Museum's commitment to celebrating diversity and connecting people in all their similarities, differences and complexity. We encourage everybody to visit the museum to share and reflect on the love stories in their own lives, before this profoundly moving exhibition closes on 28 April," Kappadath said.
LOVE for longer
Open daily 10-5pm, and until 7pm Thursdays until 28 April
Immigration Museum, 400 Flinders St, Melbourne
Tickets $15 Adults, Free Children and Concession
Interviews available with:
- Dr Moya McFazean, Senior Curator, Migration and Diversity and Lead Curator of Love
- Rohini Kappadath, General Manager, Immigration Museum