Circa 2345, an installation by artist Daniel Arsham at Galerie Perrotin in New York
Credit: Guillaume Ziccarelli

On the strength of its music and arts lineup alone, Sugar Mountain is arguably one of the highlights on a densely-packed summer festival schedule. Add to that the festival’s immersive restaurant experience Sensory, the lineup for which was announced this morning, and it’s becoming harder to find reasons not to travel interstate for a truly multi-dimensional experience at the Victorian College of the Arts.

True to its name, Sensory’s second outing offers a veritable feast of sensations across sight, sound, taste, smell and touch over the course of an hour-long set menu narrative composed through the collaborative efforts of three titans in their respective industries.

Composing a soundtrack for the experience – of which there will be multiple sittings throughout the day – is Texan quartet S U R V I V E, half of which were responsible for composing the haunting theme music to blockbuster culture sensation Stranger Things. The band will composing an original hour-long score in occasion of the festival, and if their back catalogue is any indication, festivalgoers can expect 60 minutes of pulsating, transformative instrumentals with a foreboding 80s vibe. 

With a CV that includes collaborations with James Franco, Hedi Slimane, Public School and Pharrell Williams, New York-based artist Daniel Arsham is the perfectly placed candidate to create a mise-en-scène emblematic of Sensory’s ambitions. Arsham will be responsible for the restaurant’s interior (he worked with Slimane on the interiors of Dior Homme stores during the designer’s tenure), which is sure to traverse expectation-defying architecture, sculpture and performance in much the same way that his critically-acclaimed art does. 

At left, the interior at Collingwood restaurant IDES, and opposite, Chef Peter Gunn
Credit: Supplied

Entrusted with the restaurants all-important menu will be chef Peter Gunn, who opened his Collingwood restaurant IDES last year after a series of popular pop-ups. The ex-Attica sous chef will craft several courses for diners, which – judging from the ever-changing menu at IDES – should feature seasonal ingredients, impeccably presented.

Tickets for Sensory are strictly limited and go on sale Wednesday November 16 at 8am. They’re available to be purchased separately, or in a bundle with festival tickets. Those looking for a more flexible dining experience will take heart in knowing that Melbourne favourites Kong, Mr. Miyagi, Pretty Mama and more will also be catering to your festival needs. 

You can find out more information here.

Tile and cover image: Guillaume Ziccarelli