Get-yo Gotye Fix At The Australian Body Art Festival

25 February 2015

UPDATE: The Australian Body Art Festival 2015 has been postponed until October 16–18.

Before reaching the coveted number one spot on triple j's Hottest 100 all the way back in 2011, homegrown artist Gotye's hit track 'Somebody That I Used To Know' featuring Kimbra drew plenty of attention and evoked plenty of copycats for its iconic film clip.

The creative brains behind this award-winning music video is Emma Hack – an Adelaide-based artist who creates off canvas, preferring instead to use the more avante garde medium of body paint.

[embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8UVNT4wvIGY[/embed]
Emma is just one of the talented 'alternative' artists on the bill for this year's Australian Body Art Festival, who will flock to Eumundi (20 minutes inland from Noosa) for one psychedelic weekend from May 29–31 (postponed until October 16–18).

Formerly known as the Australian Body Art Carnivale, this year marks the eighth installment of the unconventional event, which has grown to become the country's premier celebration of body art.

While some may think of full sleeves and bad Southern Cross tattoos with the mention of 'body art', the festival isn't about permanent ink, instead focusing on strategic painting, camouflage and adornment.

 Before...
 ... and after (by Emma Hack)

"We've got huge things planned for 2015," says pop|culture event's Jessica Williams. "Part of the change in title from Carnivale to Festival is to re-stage the event as exactly that – a festival that will keep everyone entertained from the Friday morning right through until Sunday evening."


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Jessica says punters can expect two exciting new festival additions in 2015: a series of hands-on workshops and the inclusion of a panel of featured artists, which is where Emma Hack and her peers come in.

Those already familiar with the somewhat underground world of body art might recognise Julie Tattam, Juliet Bradford, Nina Neher, Symon Molony, Peter Dwyer and hair stylist Caterina Di Biase as some of the big names gracing the festival with their appearance this year.

 Monochrome delight (Image: facebook.com/AustralianBodyArtFestival)

For those who are a little sceptical of the artistic merit, there's no denying the human form will be on full display, but the festival does promote a family-friendly atmosphere. Still, attendees are encouraged to come open-minded.

Jessica believes when people see the art in the flesh (pun definitely intended), they'll quickly realise the skill and creativity it takes to use bodies as part of an artwork.

"It's an awesome family day out," she says.  "Honestly, it's going to be a lot of fun and there's nothing else like it on the calendar."

 The amazing disappearing lady

The theme of the 2015 Body Art Festival is 'Pop Trashion', which will be seen and felt all throughout the three-day event. Think fashion, up-cycling, explosions of colour and reinvention.

"There's an eco-chic aspect to the theme which will lend itself quite nicely to the Wearable Art and Special Effects competitions," Jessica explains. "It also gives us the opportunity to promote eco-awareness through the festival, which never hurts!"

 Emma Hack hard at work

The launch night event will see a creative arts jam pop up in the barefoot hippy hub of Eumundi, inspired by Andy Warhol's infamous art space The Factory, while Saturday's events will be held in conjunction with the long-standing Eumundi Markets – a tourist attraction in their own right.

"The Sunny Coast, and Eumundi in particular, are perfect for hosting such an event because we've really got a little bit of everything here," enthuses Jess.

"There's the beaches, the dining, the nightlife… there's really something that will appeal to everyone. Eumundi itself is such a little hub of creativity, making it the perfect location for a festival like this!"

 Body Art behind the scenes

If you're curious to gaze upon paint-splattered models, want to indulge your creative side or just happen to be around the Sunshine Coast in October, swing by the Australian Body Art Festival and get your 'Gotye' on.

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The Australian Body Art Festival is held in Eumundi, a lush Hinterland village 20 minutes from Noosa and a scenic two-hour road trip from Brisbane. There's plenty of beachy accommodation in Noosa plus great value holiday packages dotted all around the Sunshine Coast
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Ashton Rigg

When I'm not at home in Brisbane, you’ll find me wanderlusting around hipster bars, eclectic boutiques and arty nooks. From bagels in Brooklyn to strudel in Salzburg, I believe the best way to experience a destination is by taking a bite! Tweets & 'grams at @AshtonRigg