For three decades, Next Wave Festival has shaped the Australian arts landscape through imagination, bold ideas and passion for the new. Established in 1984 to foster creativity and experimentation, Next Wave’s focus has always been on the next generation of artists in a changing world. Career development, presentation opportunity and multi-disciplinary representation have been integral since our inception.


Ritual and reflection.

As Australia’s pre-eminent festival for emerging artists, Next Wave Festival 2018 brought the most exciting new artists from across the country together, to launch the careers of the next generation in Australian art.

Making space for new conversations, dissolving artform boundaries, and setting new standards for inclusion in the arts, the works in this year’s Festival revealed multi-faceted perspectives of a world in crisis; offering reflection, rage and release in response. Ritual, our major project, unfurled across multiple sites as artists invited audiences to participate in a shared experience each sunset of the Festival.

The third successive Festival to see significant increases in tickets sold, swathes of sold-out events and increasingly culturally diverse audiences – Next Wave’s curatorial commitment to high quality work by emerging artists and rigorous national research, strongly resonates with audiences who love discovering new art and artists.