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Top Free Things to See and Do around Sydney in August

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by Lionel (subscribe)
Join me as I travel, play, eat, live and work in cities and places around the world.
Published July 30th 2017
Sydney for Free in August
Enjoy FREE events and activities in Sydney this month

Barangaroo
Photo courtesy of Barangaroo Delivery Authority


Bid goodbye to a cold July. As the weather in Sydney warms up, so do the activities.There are many things to see and do to keep adults and children entertained. You can check out interesting art exhibitions; experience Japanese street fashion; learn about urban planning; watch an Italian cultural film; see Sydney's famous bats; admire sculptures in Barangaroo; engage in science activities; listen to the Grand Organ; indulge in lots of chocolates and desserts; and even get updated on Trump's politics. Whatever event or activity suits the family or your fancy, you'll find something for FREE in Australia's busiest city this month.

1 to 5 August - EuroVisions: Art from the Goldberg Collection

EuroVisions: Art from the Goldberg Collection
Photo courtesy of City of Sydney


Head over to National Art School Gallery for a new exhibition of contemporary European artworks before it closes in August. The exhibition showcases 100 works by 30 influential European contemporary artists, drawn from the family collection of Lisa and Danny Goldberg OAM. Some of the artists include Jean-Marie Appriou, Valentin Carron, Urs Fischer, Katharina Grosse, Cameron Jamie, Michael Krebber, Goshka Macuga, Wolfgang Tillmans, Danh Vō and many others. This is an opportunity to view and experience significant and rarely works from these artists. A selection will be presented in Melbourne and Canberra in 2018. Visit the website for more information.

Time: Mondays to Saturdays, 11am to 5pm
Venue: National Art School Gallery
Address: Forbes St & Burton Street, Darlinghurst NSW 2010,
Phone: 02 9339 8744

1 to 5 August - Flesh In A Hard World by Talitha Kennedy

Flesh In A Hard World by Talitha Kennedy
Photo courtesy of City of Sydney


Head over to Interlude Gallery for an exhibition by Talitha Kennedy before it closes in August. This visual artist has been exhibiting in artist-run spaces, contemporary art organisations and commercial galleries throughout Australia. She has also held residencies in New York, Adelaide and Melbourne. This is her first exhibition in Sydney. You will view Talitha's ability to shape black leather into organic soft sculptures and mark ink scratches on crumpled paper that evoke uncanny hybrids of plant, body and landscape that hint at desire and fear of entropic nature. Visit the website for more information.

Time: Tue - Thu 10am - 6pm, Fri & Sat 11am - 5pm, Closed Mon, Sun and Public Holidays
Venue: Interlude Gallery
Address: 145/131 Glebe Point Rd, Glebe NSW 2037, Australia
Shop 11
Phone: 02 9571 6047

1 to 12 August - The Festival of Urbanism IV

The Festival of Urbanism
Photo courtesy of University of Sydney


The Henry Halloran Trust and the University of Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning are hosting a 12-day event that encourages the public to improve their knowledge of urban life and planning. The festival comprises of a series of talks with researchers, industry professionals and community leaders. You can look forward to discussions on emergent cities, an Incubator Night, film screening and even a walking tour of the Waterloo Housing Estate. Visit the website for the detailed program and reserve your seats.

3 August - Italian Cultural Institute New Italian Cinema

Mario Martone's Il giovane favoloso
Photo courtesy of Istituto Luce Cinecitta'


Head over to Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre for a new film season entitled "Beyond classics: New Italian Cinema" by the Italian Cultural Institute (IIC) in Sydney. Previous movie cycles included the Masters of Neorealism: Roberto Rossellini and Vittorio De Sica in 2015 and Marcello Mastroianni: Lover and Legend in 2016. You can enjoy a free film screening of Mario Martone's masterpiece "Il giovane favoloso" which characterizes Italian dramatic comedy. the story revolves around poet and philosopher Giacomo Leopardi and his growing up as a child prodigy and interactions with the outside world as an adult. English subtitles are available. Email reception@casulapowerhouse.com or phone 02 9824 1121 to reserve your seat.

Time: 7:30pm 9:50pm
Venue: Casula Powerhouse
Address: 1 Powerhouse Rd, Casula NSW 2170, Australia
Phone: 02 9824 1121

4 to 31 August - Tokyo FRUiTS

Tokyo FRUiTS
Photo courtesy of The Japan Foundation, Sydney


Check out a unique exhibition that traces 20 years of Harajuku street fashion and FRUiTS Magazine. The magazine led by photographer Shoichi Aoki, documented creative and fun identity of Tokyo's youth culture and Harajuku's burgeoning experimental street fashion boom. You can experience an immersive installation of a Harajuku room as well as a selection of photographs from the publication that map the myriad of trends and multiple identities of Tokyo fashion from colourful decor to neo-goths and cyber-punks. You can also trace fashion movements from Decora girl gangs, Lolita, and Urahara kei, through to the more recent trends of Neo Gyaru, Nu Goth, and the Simple Boom. This exhibition is hosted by Japan Foundation Sydney, which promote cultural and intellectual exchange between Japan and Australia through exhibitions, talk events, grant programs and Japanese language courses. Visit the website for more information. The exhibition will run till 15 September 2017

Time: Mon - Thu 10am - 8pm, Fri 10am - 6pm, Sat 10am - 1pm
Venue: The Japan Foundation
Address: Level 4, Central Park, 28 Broadway, Chippendale
Phone: 02 8239 0055

5 to 20 August - Sculpture at Barangaroo

Richard Tipping Kangooroo
Photo courtesy of Barangaroo Delivery Authority


The spectacular harbour foreshore park of Barangaroo Reserve comes alive this August with a free outdoor exhibition. It is presented by the Barangaroo Delivery Authority and Sculpture by the Sea. You and your family can view 14 classic, modernist and autonomous artworks from 9 established and emerging Australian artists, including 5 new works created specifically for the exhibition. 9 existing sculptures were hand selected by curator Geoffrey Edwards to complement the striking landscape and backdrop. The artists include Michael Le Grand, Richard Tipping, Nicole Monks, Cave Urban, Andrew Rogers, Adam King, Tereasa Trevor, Christopher Langton and Elyssa Sykes-Smith. Visit the website for more information.

Time: Daily, recommended viewing time 8am - 6pm
Venue: Barangaroo Reserve
Address: Hickson Rd, Barangaroo NSW 2000, Australia

7 August - Sydney Town Hall Organ Recital

Sydney Town Hall's grand organ
Photo courtesy of City of Sydney


The City of Sydney is hosting free lunchtime concerts featuring Sydney Town Hall's Grand Organ throughout the year. Installed in 1890, the Grand Organ was labelled the finest and biggest in the world at the time when it was unveiled. Its replacement value today would be approximately $20 million. For the month of August, the Grand Organ will come to live under the hands of 22 year old Perth organist Alessandro Pittorino. He made music history by being the first Australian organist ever accepted into a Master's at the famed Juilliard School of Music in New York. Visit the website for more information.

Time: 12.30pm - 1.30pm
Venue: Sydney Town Hall
Address: 483 George St, Sydney NSW 2000
Phone: 02 9265 9333

11 & 12 August - The Politics of Trump Forum

donald trump
Photo courtesy of Georgetown Journal of International Affairs


Join over 30 academics from the Department of Government and International Relations at the University of Sydney for an interactive 2-day forum on US President Donald Trump. You can attend 6 roundtable sessions with 5 experts on each discussing the impact of Trump on issues such as immigration, environment, gender politics, political economy, public policy, foreign policy and the geopolitics of Australia and China. Interesting topics include "Trump and the power of the digital media", "Trump as an accident waiting to happen", American corporate power in the Trump Era", "Why Pauline Hanson is not Donald Trump" and many more. Visit the website to book your tickets.

Time: Fri 1pm - 5pm & Sat 9.30am - 12.30pm
Venue: University of Sydney
Address: Parramatta and City Roads, Camperdown NSW 2006
Phone: 02 9351 2650

12 August - Bat Night

Grey-headed flying-fox
Photo courtesy of Ku-ring-gai Bat Conservation Society Inc.


WIRES (NSW Wildlife Information, Rescue and Education Service Inc.) has been rescuing and caring for native animals and providing wildlife information and education to the community for 30 years. It is the largest wildlife organisation in Australia. Its North West Sydney branch is hosting a free talk about bats this August. The attention is on the grey-headed flying fox colony at Parramatta Park. It's fated may not be as dire as the Tasmanian Devil but the bat is still listed as vulnerable to extinction. Kids of all ages can enjoy bat-related activities before watching 15,000 grey-headed flying-foxes fly out to forage for food. They will also look for microbats along the river. The event is limited to 20 people. Email wiresnwbatnight@gmail.com to book your space and get more information.

Time: 4.30pm - 6pm
Venue: Parramatta Park
Address: Pitt St & Macquarie St, Parramatta NSW 2150

12 & 13 August - smooth Festival of Chocolate

smooth Festival of Chocolate
Photo courtesy of Nova Entertainment Pty Ltd


Head over to The Rocks and enjoy an indulgent weekend this August. The smooth Festival of Chocolate returns for the fourth consecutive year with some of the most talented pastry chefs, chocolatiers and ice creameries in Australia. You and your family can look forward to signature chocolate and desserts, live demonstrations, unique chocolate sculptures and desserts and beverages created exclusively for the festival. Some of the popular names include Black Star Pastry, Gelato Messina, Nutie Donuts and Lindt. Visit the website for more information.

Time: 10am - 6pm
Venue: Harbourside location of The Rocks
Address: The Rocks, NSW 2000

13 & 19 August - Science at Australian Botanic Gardens

The Connections Garden, The Australian Botanic Garden Mount Annan
Photo courtesy of State of New South Wales and Office of Environment and Heritage


Grab the kids and head over to the Australian Botanic Gardens in Mount Annan for some science-related fun this August. You can enjoy "Science In The Wild" on 13 August. It will feature scientists at work and hands-on activities including listening to a tree and feeding a snake. You will also get to meet a dinosaur. The "PlantBank Party" takes place on 19 August as part of National Science Week. You can enjoy various activities, games and shows celebrating science at the Garden's research centre There will be seeds, slime, rainforests, rocks, reptiles, flowers, insects, botanical illustration and even prizes for best-dressed science themed outfit.

Time: 13 Aug 10am - 3pm / 19 Aug 11am - 3pm
Venue: Australian Botanic Gardens
Address: Narellan Rd, Mount Annan NSW 2567

20 August - Sydney Olympic Park Innovation Games

The Innovation Games, Sydney Olympic Park
Photo courtesy of National Science Week


Grab the kids and head over to Sydney Olympic Park for an outdoor family fun science festival. The school holiday events may be over but the hands-on activities, games and demonstrations continue in August. The Innovation Games at Cathy Freeman Park offer plenty of science, sport and technology based activities for all ages. Kids can learn about bio-hacking and drone safety, try their hand at boomerang battles and get up close and personal with frogs, bats and reptiles. There are also live shows, film screenings and treasure hunts. This free event is hosted by Sydney Olympic Park Authority and Inspiring Australia as a special National Science Week 2017 event. Visit the website for more information.

Time: 11am 3.30pm
Venue: The Yulang (near Olympic Park Railway Station) and Cathy Freeman Park
Address: Sydney Olympic Park, NSW 2127
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Why? Loads of free things to do and see in Sydney this August
Where: Various location around Sydney
Cost: Free
Your Comment
Another great article Lionel
by May Cross (score: 3|1109) 137 days ago
thank you - I've made a note of them.
by ultim (score: 2|410) 137 days ago
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