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Gippsland Art Gallery facts for kids

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Coordinates: 38°06′42″S 147°03′49″E / 38.1117°S 147.0635°E / -38.1117; 147.0635

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Gippsland Art Gallery
Gippsland Art Gallery, Port Of Sale 16FEB18.jpg
External front façade of the Port of Sale building
Established 1965
Location 70 Foster Street, Sale, Victoria
Type Art gallery
Website http://www.gippslandartgallery.com

The Gippsland Art Gallery is a Victorian Regional Public Gallery based in Sale, Victoria, 220 kilometres east of Melbourne.

The gallery is operated by the Shire of Wellington, and is located at the Port of Sale, 70 Foster Street, Sale. The Gallery exhibits art of all media, styles and periods, but has a focus on the natural environment and artists based in Gippsland. The Gallery also incorporates the Maffra Exhibition Space, an access gallery available for local artists and artist groups, located at 150 Johnson Street, Maffra.

History

The Gallery was formerly opened on 25 September 1965 by Rupert Hamer. Originally named the Sale Regional Art Centre, it was built above the Sale Library at 82 Macalister Street, Sale. Construction of the Gallery was funded by a State Government grant of £20,000, with the Sale City Council contributing a further £10,000. An intensive program of temporary exhibitions was organised, complete with educational materials, and the institution soon became an important resource centre for schools, arts and crafts groups and the public, covering the whole area of Central and East Gippsland.

In 1989 the Gallery was relocated from 82 Macalister Street after blue asbestos was reported as being present in the ceiling. The Gallery moved between several temporary locations before settling at 288 Raymond Street, Sale. In 1995 the Gallery relocated again to 70 Foster Street, Sale, and changed its name to the Gippsland Art Gallery. Between 2015 and 2017 the Gallery underwent a major redevelopment to improve facilities and increase exhibition space. The new fit out was designed by FJMT Architects, Melbourne, and opened to the public on 6 January 2018.

The Gallery has six exhibition spaces over 800sqm, including a space dedicated to Sale-based textile artist Annemieke Mein, which rotates displays three times annually.

The Gallery has presented a number of significant exhibitions throughout its history. Important exhibitions include 'From Frederick McCubbin to Charles McCubbin' (2008), which explored the creative legacy of the McCubbin Family; 'Lost Highways' (2009), the first major survey exhibition of work by Melbourne artist Tony Lloyd; and 'Disappearers' (2009), which explored the absent figure in the work of eight contemporary Australian photographers. The Gallery has also presented major exhibitions of work by William Delafield Cook, Robbie Rowlands, Kylie Stillman, Sam Jinks, Charles McCubbin, Annemieke Mein and Jane Burton. In 2011 the Gallery presented the first ever comprehensive survey of work by Russian-born Swiss artist Nicholas Chevalier (1828–1902). The exhibition coincided with the release of a major publication by Curator Simon Gregg, which includes a detailed catalogue raisonne of Chevalier's Australian works. The exhibition later toured to Geelong Art Gallery.

To date the Gallery has had seven Directors: Gwen Webb OAM (1976–1990); Giacomina Pradolin (1990–1991); Anthony Dahlitz (1992); Judy Miles (1993–1994); Michael Young (1994–2005); Anton Vardy (2005–2017); and Simon Gregg (2018–present).

The Gallery today

The Gallery currently presents approximately thirty-five exhibitions annually, across the Gippsland Art Gallery, Sale, and the Maffra Exhibition Space.

The Gallery hosts two biennial prize exhibitions: the John Leslie Art Prize for landscape painting (presented every even year); and the Gippsland Print Award (presented every odd year). The John Leslie Art Prize is a $20,000 acquisitive award, whose past winners include David Keeling (2000), Vera Möller (2002), Mark McCarthy (2004), Brigid Cole-Adams (2006), Andrew Mezei (2008), Jason Cordero (2010), Tony Lloyd (2012), Shannon Smiley (2014), and Amelda Read-Forsythe (2016). The Award is named after the late John Leslie OBE, former Patron of the Gallery and Mayor of Sale. The Gippsland Print Award is a $5,000 acquisitive open-entry award for printmaking. The winners to date have been Martin King (2015) and Jock Clutterbuck (2017).

To mark its fiftieth birthday, in 2015 the Gallery published 'Hindsight: Gippsland Art Gallery History & Collections, 1965–2015'. Written and compiled by Simon Gregg, the 446-page book chronicles the history of the Gallery, collection highlights, and a complete collection catalogue.

Permanent collection

Gippsland Art Gallery is home to a permanent collection of approximately 1,750 items, consisting of paintings, works on paper, ceramics, sculpture, textiles, woodwork and metalwork. The collection has a focus on the natural environment, and specifically Gippsland artists and Gippsland themes. The collection includes works by Pieter Bruegel the Elder, Jan Hendrik Scheltema, Peter Booth, Rodney Forbes, Victor Majzner, Clive Murray-White, Rosemary Laing, Tony Lloyd, Polixeni Papapetrou, Annemieke Mein, Charles Rolando, Ann Greenwood, Andrew Browne, and Sam Leach.

The Gallery is also home to the Esso Australia Collection of Australian Art, a significant collection of artworks spanning the breadth of the twentieth century, which were donated to the Gallery in 2018. A rotating display of artworks from the collection is on permanent display at the Gallery.

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