Sydney date ideas: Art events in October 2020

Our top four art-inspired events and experiences in the big city.

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This fortnight we saw ourselves scratching our heads for new date ideas.

And then the social media advertisements caught our attention reminding us that Van Gogh Alive was in town. So off we headed on a Thursday evening for a cheeky and unusual date night.

It's not the only artsy event going on this month. Here are our picks of the best of art to check out this month.

Stef and D

We're Stef and D, a pair of married jet setters. Together, we've visited 55 countries and we're determined to see even more – all while working full-time and paying off a mortgage. We count our dollars at home and while we're away, and we're here to share our tips on how you can travel on a budget.

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For classic art: Van Gogh Alive

Van Gogh Alive

This multi-scensory experience showcases Van Gogh's vast library of works on a larger-than-life scale. Held within a confined space, everything from sketches, paintings and notes come alive through projection and are complemented with a symphony of sound and smell. We left mesmerised and thoroughly educated about Van Gogh's life, art and inner workings.

  • When: Now until 20 December 2020.
  • Where: Royal Hall of Industries, Entertainment Quarter.
  • Hot tip: Adult prices range from $30-$59 with the price different due to off-peak/peak times. Considering you're in for a 45-minute experience no matter what, honing in on the off-peak dates is worth your time. Off-peak is during the weekdays, outside of the school holidays. We visited on a Thursday evening outside of the school break and paid $36 each.
  • Book: Van Gogh Alive.

For modern art: Archibald Prize 2020

Stand strong for who you are by Vincent Namatjira

Artist Vincent Namatijira made history this year becoming the first ever Indigenous artist to win the Archibald Prize. His portrait, "Stand Strong For Who You Are" is a tribute to Indigenous AFL player Adam Goodes and his stand on racism. He is painted alongside him in solidarity and support.

  • When: 26 September 2020 to 19 January 2021.
  • Where: Art Gallery of New South Wales.
  • Hot tip: Make a proper date of it and book an Archibald Dining Package at Chiswick at the Gallery. Dishes are inspired by the prize winners and their stories and all packages include tickets to the Archibald, Wynne and Sulman Prizes 2020.
  • Book: Art Gallery of New South Wales.

For photography: Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Wildlife Photographer of the Year - Yongqing Bao

Capturing those beautiful, breathtaking and true moments in nature is the annual Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. Entries come from all across the world and are of the highest calibre. Be prepared to be amazed. The exhibition is on loan from the Natural History Museum in London until December.

  • Where: Australian National Maritime Museum.
  • When: 22 June 2020 - 28 January 2021.
  • Hot tip: There are stacks of school holiday activities running until 11 October to keep the little ones busy while you enjoy the exhibition. However, if it's just the two of you, plan to visit after this date to avoid the crowds.
  • Book: Australian National Maritime Museum.

For interactivity: Paint and sip classes

Cork and Canvas painting studio,

These are super fun, interactive classes for couples who love to get creative. You'll be given a canvas, a dedicated painting, all the right paint colours and some instructions then it's time to make your masterpiece. Oh, and did I mention the BYO wine. Because it's definitely more fun that way.

I've attended in-person classes, which are still available at a limited capacity due to COVID-19. There are also live streams if you'd prefer to paint with your partner at home.

  • When: Anytime.
  • Where: Popular classes in Sydney are Cork and Canvas, and Cork & Chroma. You can also find a wealth of classes on ClassBento.
  • Hot tip: You'll learn different paintings each session. Choose which painting you'd like to learn together for a collaborative date. And while you're there, choose which wine you'd like to pair it with together, too.

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