Feast of free cultural experiences on offer these school holidays

Exciting family-friendly activities, exhibitions, workshops and cultural experiences will engage and inspire young minds and relieve family budgets these school holidays, thanks to the NSW Government’s $5.9 million investment providing free admission to museums and galleries.

Minister for the Arts Ben Franklin said free general admission to Australian Museum, Museums of History NSW, Powerhouse Ultimo and the Art Gallery of NSW, plus a range of free activities across the State’s cultural institutions will provide families and young people with plenty of ways to feed their curiosity and imagination during the school holidays.

“The Liberals and Nationals know families are seeking enriching and memorable cultural experiences, which is why our cost-of-living initiatives ensure art and culture is accessible for all,” Mr Franklin said.

“We also know that keeping the kids entertained over the holidays can be costly for families, so these free activities will help to relieve the financial pressure on family budgets these school holidays.”

Holiday activity highlights include:

  • Art Gallery of NSW – Drop in and Make Mechanical Sculptures 11am – 3:30pm Monday – Friday 3-20 January and Sundays 8-29 January
  • Art Gallery of NSW – Make art with us: Fantastic figures 11am–3.30pm Mondays – Fridays 3–20 January, and Sundays throughout January 2023
  • Powerhouse Ultimo – The Lab Studio 21 December – 26 January Suitable for all ages
  • Australian Museum – Drop In and Paint your favourite shark 10am – 4pm every Monday and Tuesday from 9 January 2023
  • Sydney Opera House – Wild City Exhibition 3-15 January, 2-5 pm daily
  • State Library of NSW – Imagine, the Wonder of Picture Books exhibition

Art Gallery of NSW Director Michael Brand said the newly opened Art Gallery extension will captivate children and parents alike with a range of immersive activities in the new gallery.

“The opening of the new building of the Art Gallery of NSW expands significantly on an already wide range of free activities available for children and families on site. These include wearable art workshops, digital art workshops, story time, drop in and make sessions and tours tailored for children,” Mr Brand said.

What’s On Throughout January School Holidays

Art Gallery of NSW

Powerhouse Ultimo, Powerhouse Castle Hill and Parramatta

  • The Lab Studio – a family-friendly interactive space at Powerhouse Ultimo – Free activities, 21 December 2022 – 26 January 2023 Suitable for all ages
  • Paper People Fashion workshop for all ages inspired by Zampatti Powerhouse at Powerhouse Ultimo – Free 21 December 2022 – 26 January 2023 Suitable for all ages
  • Creative Studio: Ableton Note Free 3 day music workshop for students in years 7 – 10 facilitated by Eric Chapus and Luke Warren in Parramatta, 10-2pm 11-13 January 2023
  • Creative Studio: Hope Siafega Free 3 day graphic illustration workshop for years 7 -10 at Powerhouse Castle Hill, 10-2pm 18-20 January 2023
  • Upcycled Wearables 1hr workshop with Susie Rugg at Powerhouse Castle Hill, 7–8, 14–15 and 21–22 January 2023 Suitable for ages 5+

Sydney Opera House

Wild City Exhibition – Centre for Creativity, 3-15 January 2023 2-5 pm daily

State Library of NSW

Imagine … the Wonder of Picture Books exhibition

Suitable for young children. You’ll see original illustrations from old favourites such as Grug, Macca the Alpaca and Mr McGee and meet some new friends as well.

Free Imagine Exhibition Tour 1 – 1.30 pm, Dates: 16 Jan, 19-20 Jan 23-25 January

• Online Drawing workshop with Matthew Lin 10am Tuesday 17 Jan

• Online Book quiz – 11am Wednesday 18 Jan

Drawing in the galleries, 1pm Friday 20 Jan

• Storytime in Polish with Ewelina, Children’s Library 11am Monday 23 Jan

Author workshop with Kris Darell, (Author of Football Fever Junior Fiction) 10am Wednesday 25 Jan

• Drawing birds with Andrea – free online drawing workshop, 2pm Wednesday 25 Jan

Australian Museum

· Drop In and Paint your favourite shark in an immersive art adventure. 10am – 4pm Every Monday and Tuesday from 9th January 2023. Ages: 5+ Hintze Hall (outside Wild Planet)

Museum of Sydney

· PlayScapes – from 17 December

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