Regional Art Galleries
Visiting one of Victoria's regional art galleries makes for a memorable day out. The galleries in the gold rush cities of Ballarat and Bendigo have impressive collections of 19th century Australian and European art. Other galleries have unique specialist collections, such as textiles in Ararat, ceramics in Shepparton and photography in Horsham.
Most of Victoria's regional galleries are free and are open most days, however we recommend you check the gallery websites for exact entry information. The alphabetical list below links directly to the gallery websites so you can easily find what's on, opening times and conditions of entry.
- Ararat Art Gallery is located in the heart of Ararat in the historic Town Hall building. It offers an exciting program of exhibitions across all areas of the visual arts. Established in 1968, the Gallery has a longstanding commitment to supporting and promoting contemporary textile fibre art.
- Arts Space Wodonga is a contemporary arts venue that presents exhibitions of local, regional and imported works, with an emphasis on art by North East Victorian artists.
- Art Gallery of Ballarat , established in 1884, is Australia's oldest and largest regional gallery with a remarkably comprehensive collection of Australian art, including Arnhem Land bark paintings and landmark works of the Heidelberg, Social Realist and the Angry Penguins periods. The Gallery's other treasures include Medieval manuscripts, the nation's most comprehensive collection of works by the Lindsay family, and the original flag from the 1854 Eureka Stockade.
- Benalla Art Gallery has an extensive collection that includes Australian paintings relevant to its bushranger country location as well as outstanding Indigenous works. The collection is divided into two parts: the Ledger Collection -19th and 20th century art and the Gallery Collection - modern and contemporary art in a variety of media. The collection includes a tapestry of Sidney Nolan's Glenrowan, from his Ned Kelly series.
- Bendigo Art Gallery is one of Australia's oldest and largest regional art galleries. The Gallery's collections include Australian art from the 1850s to the present day, a special collection of art from the Bendigo goldfields and 19th century European paintings, sculptures and decorative arts. Each year Bendigo Art Gallery presents an exciting program of exhibitions and events including regular exhibitions from international galleries and collections that are exclusive to Bendigo. Take a video tour of the Bendigo Art Gallery.
- Castlemaine Art Gallery is housed in an elegant art deco building designed in 1931. Its collection specialises in Australian art by artists such as Arthur Streeton, Rupert Bunny, John Brack and Jeffery Smart. The Gallery also has a contemporary photographic and ceramic collection.
- East Gippsland Art Gallery in Bairnsdale is a dynamic community gallery with a vibrant program of exhibitions by local artists, workships and events.
- Geelong Gallery was established in 1896 and since then has amassed a magnificent collection of 19th and 20th century Australian and European paintings and decorative arts. The collection includes18th and 19th century English porcelain, British art pottery, colonial Australian silver, as well as contemporary Australian paintings, prints, sculpture and ceramics. A particular focus of the collection is early images of the Geelong region. The collection also includes many works of national significance such as Eugène von Guérard's View of Geelong (1856) and Frederick McCubbin's A bush burial (1890).
- Gippsland Art Gallery in Sale, focuses on works produced in or relating to Gippsland landscapes and environment. The Gallery is also custodian of the Victoria State Craft Wood Collection and works from the Construction and Building Industry Superannuation (CBUS) Collection.
- Hamilton Art Gallery 's collection has grown to over 7000 objects and now includes silver , porcelain and glass from 1700 onwards, a collection of 18th century landscapes by Paul Sandby, Oriental ceramics from the major dynasties, European and Australian prints , Australian paintings and watercolours and fine international examples of 20th century decorative arts. The Gallery actively collects Australian art, works on paper and contemporary decorative arts and presents a high quality program that features some of the finest exhibitions touring Australia, exhibitions from the vast permanent collection and work by local artists.
- Horsham Regional Art Gallery is currently housed in temporary quarters at Jubilee Hall in Roberts Ave, Horsham pending the redevelopment of its permanent home in the city's elegant 1930s Art Deco Town Hall building. It is offering a limited exhibitions program featuring changing exhibitions of contemporary and traditional art and photography.
- Latrobe Regional Gallery in Morwell features eight exhibition spaces and a sculpture courtyard. The collection includes Australian contemporary art, glass and works relating to the Gippsland region. The Gallery is also custodian of many important works from the CBUS collection.
- Mildura Art Gallery's major attractions are its holdings of Australian sculpture, the Elliot Collection of oil paintings and works on paper by Sir Frank Brangwyn and Sir William Orpen RA. The historic Rio Vista House adjacent to the gallery is also worth a visit.
- Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery has an outstanding collection of Australian prints and drawings, including works by Arthur Boyd, Russell Drysdale and Albert Tucker.
- Shepparton Art Museum reopened in 2012 with its new name and a major redevelopment of its home in Shepparton's Eastbank Centre. The refreshed gallery (SAM) houses over 3,000 Australian ceramic works from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. It also owns a fine collection of paintings by artists such as John Perceval, Frederick McCubbin, Arthur Streeton and Margaret Preston.
- Swan Hill Regional Art Gallery is situated on the Marraboor River in Swan Hill, in a purpose built art gallery opened in 1987. The Gallery has a permanent collection of over 300 works of art with a focus on Australian naïve art, works on paper, and works of art that relate to the Swan Hill region.
- Wangaratta Art Gallery was established in 1987 in a striking heritage building located in Wangaratta's arts precinct, a short walk from City's centre. The Gallery collects textile art, small sculpture, wood, and significant works of art from, and about the north east of Victoria region. It also collects works of art by state and national artists of significance.
- Warrnambool Art Gallery offers a diverse collection of artworks from elegant European salon paintings to the Avant-garde modernism of the Angry Penguins. Artworks range from the romanticised colonial landscapes of Eugene Von Guerard and Louis Buvelot, to contemporary Australian printmaking by Juan Davila, Barbara Hanrahan and Ray Arnold. The Gallery's three temporary exhibition spaces present a diverse program incorporating leading Australian art practitioners and lessor known artists waiting to be discovered. View a video about Warrnambool Arts Gallery's collection.
The Hugh Williamson Foundation Gallery at the Art Gallery of Ballarat
Photo: Andrew Wilson
Photo: Shannon McGrath
Sacred Footsteps from the Roof of the World Tour 2007, by Tibetan Monks, Latrobe Regional Gallery
Photo: Joanna Bartels