From 26 August – 22 October, Ballarat International Foto Biennale (BIFB) will present a packed 60-day program showcasing more than 2000 works across the city.
If that feels a bit much for your little ones’ attention span, fear not.
From sun-printing to kids’ street photography, there’s drop-in activities, workshops and interactive exhibitions designed with budding photographers in mind.
Festivalgoers also benefit from special discounted rates at selected family-friendly resorts and hotels. It’s a great excuse to relive your childhood memories for a weekend and combine the spectacle of the biennale with some of Ballarat’s enduring attractions.
While we all love reruns of Bluey, a giant inflatable monkey certainly tops another Saturday in front of the iPad!
Daily 26 August – 22 October, Ballarat Central (outdoors)
Lisa Roet’s radiant Golden Monkey sculpture takes the form of the endangered Myanmar snub-nosed monkey with its distinct upturned face and long tail. This cheeky primate will be clinging to a building in Central Ballarat at a location yet to be revealed. Sure to provoke a smile for young and old alike! Don’t forget to pick up a choc-banana icecream from nearby Il Piccolo Gelato.
Please note: Golden Monkey will temporarily be deflated if the Ballarat wind forecast exceeds 50km/ph. We don’t want a monkey on the loose across the countryside.
Tongpop Fiasco Interactive Studio
Daily 26 August – 22 October (10am–4pm), The Mining Exchange
Entry included with Festival Pass.
Tongpop Fiasco Interactive Studio delves into the vibrant hues of artist and educator Telly Tuita’s ancestral home in Tonga. Suitable for children aged 8+.
How to Fly – Erik Johansson
Daily 26 August – 22 October, The Mining Exchange and RACV Goldfields Resort Creswick
Entry included with Festival Pass
An exhibition of surreal landscapes and imaginary worlds that seem almost real but are a composite of many images. Influenced by his childhood memories of the Swedish countryside, Johansson’s work incorporates Nordic nature, wide open landscapes, and small red houses. With a keen eye for detail and mastery of production, his optical illusions present inner worlds that defy reality. Header image on this page: Self-Supporting by Erik Johansson (2019).
Open during festival hours, the BIFB Kids’ Hub at the Mining Exchange will feature both free drop-in sessions and bookable family-friendly workshops.
Don’t forget to share your creations at #bifbkids and tag @ballaratfoto for your chance to showcase your creativity on BIFB channels.
FREE DROP IN SESSIONS
Daily Drop-In Photography Activities
26 August — 22 October | Monday to Friday (10am—4pm), Saturday & Sunday (10am–2pm)
Suitable for: All ages
Kinder Kids Photography Activities
Tuesdays from 26 August — 22 October (10-11am)
Suitable for: Children under 5 years
School Holiday Program: Telly Tuita’s Tongpop Fiasco
16 September — 1 October (10am–5pm)
Suitable for: All ages
Workshop numbers are capped so be sure to book ahead. Parents and carers are welcome to stay for the duration of workshops. Children under 8 years must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
Two-part workshop held on two consecutive Thursdays, 21 September and 28 September (10am–1pm)
$150 (Full 2-day Session Pass)
In this two-part workshop, participants will work with artist and educator Chris Bowes to create a series of engaging photographs and bind them into a handmade photobook. Suitable for those aged 8+.
Join artist and mother Kate Golding for a creative session at the BIFB Kids’ Hub.
Cost: $22 per session | Bookings essential
Tues 19 September (9–10:30am), Thurs 21 September (9–10:30am), Sat 23 September (3:30-5pm)
Cost: $10 / FREE if staying at RACV Goldfields Resort
Make your own face mask disguise at RACV Goldfields Resort. Get crafty and use the shapes and colours you love to create your mask. Have your picture taken at the end of the session before you take your mask home.
19 August – 3 December, daily drop-in activity available from 10am–5pm
Drop into RACV Goldfields Resort’s ArtHouse Exhibition Program and make paper planes like the ones that feature in Erik Johansson’s artwork Office Escape (2019).
Quest Ballarat Station
Located 5min walk from the festival hub, opposite Ballarat Railway Station.
Perfect for families and groups, Quest Ballarat Station offers 77 modern and spacious studio, one bedroom, two bedroom, three bedroom, and accessible apartments. For a discounted stay during the festival, use promo code FOTO2023 to save 12%. Conditions apply.
RACV Goldfields Resort
A countryside retreat in Creswick perfectly situated to soak up the region’s history, arts, culture and outdoor activities. Stay overnight at RACV Goldfields Resort during the festival and use promo code FOTO2023 to save 15%. Terms and conditions apply.