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Four things you didn’t know about 1000 Doors Ballarat

Visit Ballarat

17 Aug 2021

Filed underSee & Do

Mystery and intrigue are at the heart of 1000 Doors Ballarat.

The interactive art installation is a haunting labyrinth of doors, gateways, portraits and screens.

Created by Australian artists Christian Wagstaff and Keith Courtney, 1000 Doors is described as an “imaginative and emotional exploration”, one where “we cannot help but bring our own proclivities, fantasies and burdens with us”.

Located between the Ballarat Town Hall and Myer in Armstrong Street South, it will be open Thursday –  Sunday 12 noon –  8pm (until 24 October).

Tickets are $10 (under 5 and over 75 years free).

And while a sense of the unknown is a big part of 1000 Doors‘ attraction, we can still let you in on a few behind-the-scenes secrets…

Image: James Morgan

1. Salvaged Ballarat doors feature throughout the labyrinth

“We are so thrilled to be presenting 1000 Doors in the heart of Ballarat, particularly when countless doors were originally sourced here,” Christian and Keith said.

“It’s like these doors have been on this extraordinary journey and led us back here to Ballarat.”

Ballarat composers Damien Charles and Kate Lucas. Image: Arts & Culture Ballarat

2. A Ballarat soundscape has been created especially for the installation

Local composers Damien Charles and Kate Lucas have written a Ballarat-specific music piece to complement the experience.

“Without revealing too much, the piece incorporates modified found sounds (non-musical sounds), synthesised textures and audio nostalgia fragments that are meaningful to us and reflect what we know about Ballarat,” Damien and Kate said.

“Hopefully it’ll stir something up in people who come to experience it too.” 

Image: Sam Slicer

3. Same same, but different…

Labelled as “perversely compelling” by the Australian Financial Review, 1000 Doors has previously toured the Melbourne International Arts Festival, Brisbane Festival, Adelaide Fringe Festival, Auckland’s Aotea Square and the Bendigo Art Gallery.

But as you’ve read above, each incarnation of 1000 Doors is slightly different, with subtle tributes to its temporary location embedded throughout.

And the fact the whole structure ages and patinas each time it’s exhibited just adds to the time-worn experience.

Image: James Morgan

4. Ring, ring, ring, ring…

As you make your way through the enigma that is 1000 Doors, you might stumble across a ringing telephone.

The question is, will your curiosity get the better of you? And if so, who (or what) will greet you on the other end of the phone?


The City of Ballarat acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land we live and work on, the Wadawurrung and Dja Dja Wurrung People, and recognises their continuing connection to the land and waterways. We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging and extend this to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People.