Often heralded as the cultural capital of Australia, Melbourne offers a surplus of artistic expression with a multitude of galleries, festivals and events taking place throughout its calendar annually. With all kinds of galleries from government and public to privately run, along with countless underground studios and spaces, one often has to look hard to see the treasures that are hidden down side roads or tucked away through small doors in the laneways. It is impossible to go to Melbourne and not see a striking work of art in one form or another, whether it be the various outdoor sculptures, the stunning architecture, or the abundance of urban, street and graffiti art for which the city has become famous. Proud of this reputation, art programs often take over the city, such as the ‘Transporting Art’ project which is celebrating it’s 35th year, acting as just one way in which the public is integrated with the Melbourne art scene. Voted as the world’s most liveable city 2015, it is not hard to see why travelers flock to Melbourne in order to get a taste of this chic, relaxed, diverse and truly breathtakingly beautiful city.
National Gallery of Victoria
Made up of the NGV International and The Ian Potter Centre in Federation Square, the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) is Australia’s oldest public art gallery and proudly exhibits a wide range of artworks from around the globe.
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A visually striking building, the slate exterior is enveloped by water as you walk towards the open entrance and are greeted by the gallery’s famous Waterwall. Sheets of glass are brought to life by rainwater collected on the roof of the NGV International building, which is recycled through the drainpipes and water treatment plant. With water shortages in Australia as an on-going concern, it is innovative design ideas such as this that make the NGV stand out.
Located in a vast converted warehouse in the bohemian suburb of Fitzroy, Gertrude Contemporary was opened in 1985 and is centred around not only the presentation and exhibiting of contemporary art but the creation of it as well. Focusing on newly commissioned works and initially involved in Australian contemporary art, in recent years the gallery has included a diverse range of international works which are displayed across its three gallery spaces. The gallery has an impressive catalogue of renowned artists, and holds regularly changing exhibitions and impressive educational programs. The spacious front room allows for a fantastic flow of natural light and enhanced viewing for the public.