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Event Category: Arts Festivals

The arts are as vast and varied as humanity itself. Our cultures and religions, and hopes, fears and desires are all expressed through the myriad forms of art that, just like us, keep evolving and expanding. No wonder then that arts festivals are major events in a country’s calendar.

Whether it’s just to keep yourself entertained, or to enrich your understanding of a destination and its people, festivals of art will often leave you with richer and more memorable travel experiences.

Arts and Art Festivals

Sometimes arts festivals are understood as encompassing the arts at large, whereas events which tend to focus on the visual arts are often called art (in the singular) festivals or art exhibitions – or lowbrow art versus highbrow art. At Travel Begins at 40, we are no brow at all and love everything. From the fine, visual and plastic arts to the performing and decorative arts and architecture, and from ethnic and religious arts to avant-garde and experimental arts, let yourself be surprised, amused or challenged wherever you travel.

Fringe festivals

Fringe festivals are events where the style or subject matter of the arts presented are experimental, and it’s the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, one of the world’s largest arts festivals, where the term comes from. Fringe festivals can now be found all over the world such as the Rainforest Fringe Festival in Borneo.

Art Biennale and Triennale

Occurring only once every two and three years, an art biennale and triennale sometimes make for the largest and most important art gatherings in the world, such as the famous Venice Biennale. But also some of these lesser known rare events are much worth attending, of which the Setouchi Triennale in Japan is a case in point. Make sure you plan them into your travels well ahead of time because if you miss one, it’ll be a long wait.

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May 2018

Art and China After 1989: Theatre of the World

May 11, 2018 - June 1, 2018
Guggenheim Museum Bilbao Bilbao,Spain + Google Map
ART AND CHINA AFTER 1989

A major exhibition of art from contemporary China opens at the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao on May 11. Entitled Art and China after 1989: Theatre of the World, the exhibition is…

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October 2018

Anni Albers Tate Modern

October 11, 2018
Tate Modern, Bankside
London,SE1 9TGUnited Kingdom
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£18
Anni Albers

An exhibition devoted to the works of Anni Albers runs at the Tate Modern, London from 11 October 2018 to 27 January 2019. This exhibition, co-organised by Tate Modern and…

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July 2019

Rainforest Fringe Festival 2019

July 5, 2019 - July 12, 2019
Kuching Kuching,SarawakMalaysia
Rainforest Fringe Festival Malaysia

During a period of eight days in July, the best of Sarawak’s art, music, culture, craft, photography, film, food and heritage will be showcased in the heart of Kuching, the…

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Gentse Feesten 2019 (Ghent Festival) in Belgium

July 19, 2019 - July 28, 2019
All over Ghent city centre Ghent,Belgium + Google Map
Gentse Feesten Belgium

During the 10 days of Gentse Feesten (Ghent Festival), the entire city of Ghent in Belgium turns into Europe’s largest cultural open air festival with over 3,300 international and local…

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September 2019

Turner Prize 2019 at the Turner Contemporary

September 28, 2019 - January 12, 2020
Margate, Rendezvous
Margate,CT9 1HGUnited Kingdom
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Turner Prize at the Turner Contemporary Margate

The prize and the gallery that were both named for artist J M W Turner will be brought together in 2019, when the Turner Contemporary Gallery...

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Setouchi Triennale 2019, Japan

September 28, 2019 - November 4, 2019
Setouchi islands Japan
Setouchi Triennale Japan

Every three years the Setouchi Triennale, one of Japan’s biggest festivals of modern art, takes place in the south-west of the country. Come spring this exceptional celebration...

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November 2019

Baltimore Book Festival & Light City Baltimore

November 1, 2019 - November 10, 2019
Inner Harbor Baltimore,MDUnited States + Google Map
Free
Light City Baltimore

Whether it is illumination through the enlightenment of books, or through the bulbs brightening the art and music, Baltimore Book Festival and Light City Baltimore...

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White Temple Thailand Light Fest 2019

November 22, 2019 - December 22, 2019
Wat Rong Khun, ตำบล ป่าอ้อดอนชัย อำเภอเ มืองเชียงราย
Chiang Rai,Chiang Rai57000Thailand
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White Temple Light Fest Thailand

Thailand is pulling out all the stops from 22 November to 22 December when the inaugural Wat Rong Khun Light Fest will light up northern Thailand’s already very bright White…

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December 2019

Wonderfruit Festival 2019, Thailand

December 12, 2019 - December 16, 2019
The Fields, Siam Country Club
Pattaya,ChonburyThailand
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Wonderfruit Festival Thailand

Within just a few years, the Wonderfruit Festival has risen to become one of the most anticipated festivals in Thailand blending music and gastronomy with wellness...

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January 2020

Broadway Week 2020, New York, USA

January 21, 2020 - February 9, 2020
Broadway New York,NYUnited States + Google Map
Broadway Week

One of the Big Apple’s most popular events, Broadway Week, takes place in late January to early February coinciding with a plethora of other offers, making New York much more…

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February 2020

Hong Kong Arts Festival 2021

February 13, 2020 - March 14, 2020
Different venues in Hong Kong Hong Kong + Google Map
Hong Kong Arts Festival

International top artists giving world class performances ranging from the classical to the avant-garde, and the familiar to the surprising – the Hong Kong Arts Festival 2020 is this vibrant…

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March 2020

Andy Warhol Art at Tate Modern, London

March 12, 2020 - November 15, 2020
Tate Modern, Bankside
London,SE1 9TGUnited Kingdom
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Andy Warhol Art

London’s first retrospective of Andy Warhol art in almost 20 years has re-opened at the Tate Modern with special measures in place due to the COVID-19 outbreak...

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November 2020

Canal Convergence, Scottsdale, Arizona 2020

November 6, 2020 - November 15, 2020
Scottsdale Waterfront Scottsdale,AZUnited States + Google Map
Free
Canal Convergence Scottsdale

A large open air art event in downtown Scottsdale, the Canal Convergence features local and international artists. It begins in the late afternoon and continues into the night....

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December 2020

Amsterdam Light Festival 2020

December 10, 2020 - January 3, 2021
Amsterdam Amsterdam,Netherlands + Google Map
Absorbed_by_Light Amsterdam Light Festival

The streets and canals of Amsterdam will once more host the ninth Amsterdam Light Festival this winter, from 10 December, 2020 to 3 January, 2021...

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January 2021

Harbin Ice Festival China 2020 Extravaganza

January 5 - February 25
Harbin Harbin,China + Google Map
Harbin Ice Festival

Once mostly a regional affair, the Harbin Ice Festival, China - or the Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival as it is officially known - has grown into the…

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March 2021

Slapstick Festival Bristol, 2021

March 1 - March 7
Bristol Bristol,United Kingdom + Google Map
Slapstick Festival

Fans of the silent screen should virtually head to Bristol this March for Slapstick Festival 2021, a celebration of silent and vintage screen comedy, and much more. Now in its…

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May 2021

Zurich Tanzt Dance Festival 2021

May 7 - May 30
Zurich, Wasserwerkstrasse 93
Zurich,8037Switzerland
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Zurich Tanzt

Zurich will be the home to a city-wide festival of dance in May. Held from 7 to 30 May, Zurich Tanzt assembles some of the finest contemporary dancers in the…

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