QAGOMA exhibition William Forsythe : The Fact of Matter 2009

Must-see Brisbane exhibitions you need to go to in 2020

Astrologers say that 2020 will be the year you receive 20/20 vision on what you should do in your life, and we have no doubt that attending these Brisbane exhibitions is one of them.

Whether it’s local performances or international artists coming in to play, our theatres, museums, and centres here set the stage for a range of world-class experiences.

So get your calendar ready and make note of these must-see arts and cultural exhibitions in 2020.

Brisbane exhibitions

Head to South Bank and find yourself at the centre of a bustling and beautiful arts hub – with the Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA), Queensland Art Gallery, Queensland Museum, and Queensland Performing Arts Centre all within a stone’s throw of each other.


QAGOMA Water exhibitions 2019-2020

Photo by Mark Sherwood, QAGOMA. Installation by Cai Guo-Qiang.


When: 7 December 2019 – 26 April 2020

Cost: Under 5 years: Free, Child (5-12 years): $8, Adult: $18

Why go? Quench your thirst this summer at QAGOMA’s Water. The immersive experience will explore how vital this resource sustains all forms of life and start the conversation about the reality of the environmental issues we face today. Whether you walk across Olafur Eliasson’s rocky riverbed, see predator and prey gather to drink together at Cai Guo-Qiang’s waterhole, or watch Angela Tiatia’s tidal currents rise and fall, you’re guaranteed to learn something new.


Where: South Bank to New Farm

When: March-April 2020

Cost: Free

Why go? Self-professed stickybeak? Feed your curious side at Curiocity, an experience designed to spark the imagination about science, innovation and Brisbane. Welcome to all ages, visitors will have the chance to explore, create and play in a variety of creations, augmented reality spaces and music pop-ups. The installations will be dotted along the Brisbane River from South Bank to Brisbane Powerhouse for over 20 days.

World Science Festival Brisbane

World Science Festival Brisbane 2019
Where: South Bank

When: March 2020

Cost: Mix of free and paid activities. Check the schedule for more information.

Why go? Ever wondered how art and science come together in perfect harmony? World Science Festival Brisbane explores and celebrates the intersection of science and art through a month-long program. Whether you’ve got a budding scientist in your midst, or want to open your mind to the wonders of the universe, you’ll find a range of activities and discussions in this year’s line-up that is sure to blow your mind (figuratively, of course).

Women of the World Festival

Where: QPAC and Brisbane Powerhouse

When: 3-5 April 2020

Cost: Check the schedule for more information

Why go? Be your own wing woman at the Women of the World Festival. Held in thirty countries across five continents, the festival celebrates what it means to be an empowered woman in today’s society. You’ll hear from a variety of keynote speakers, watch live performances from female artists, and get insight into how to overcome obstacles to achieve your potential.

For something a little further afield

Looking to attend more exhibitions near Brisbane? We’ve done the groundwork for you and found the best ones happening on the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast.

Gold Coast exhibitions

Swell Sculpture Festival

Swell Scuplture Festival Gold Coast 2018 events
Where: Currumbin Beach, Gold Coast

When: 11-12 September 2020

Cost: Free

Why go? Ever been to an outdoor art gallery with the Currumbin coastline as the backdrop? Whether your answer is yes or no, not attending the Swell Sculpture Festival next year would be a serious oversight on your part. Unleash your inner Picasso from dusk to dawn and attend the masterclasses, artist presentations, and guided twilight walks. Oh and parents, there are children’s workshops on offer too. Sounds pretty swell to us.

Sunshine Coast exhibitions

Horizons Festival

Where: Maroochydore, Sunshine Coast

When: 28 August- 6 September 2020

Cost: Check the schedule for more information

Why go? If this event wasn’t on your horizon in 2019, it sure will be in 2020. If you consider yourself a culture vulture, the Horizon Festival is the place to see the country’s best music, performance, art, and film. The festival takes place across the Sunshine Coast region, with the Glasshouse Mountains, Maleny and Caloundra fielding parts of the action. With a focus on First Nations and local, emerging artists, you are guaranteed to experience something you haven’t encountered before.