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About the Gallery

Swan Hill Regional Art Gallery offers a lively program of changing exhibitions as well as displaying works from the permanent collection and from local artists. An ever-evolving calendar of events is organised, ranging from school holiday programs and art workshops, to live outdoor music and concerts featuring our magnificent 1923 Steinway & Sons grand piano.

The Gallery is a program of Swan Hill Rural City Council. Staff and volunteers strive to deliver inspiring, challenging and ultimately rewarding programs for our visitors.

The Gallery’s permanent collection includes paintings, drawings, prints and sculptures from 1970, with special interest in Australian Naïve art, works on paper and pieces relating to this region. In keeping with this theme, the Gallery hosts the prestigious biennial National Print and Drawing Acquisitive Award.

In the past 12 months the gallery hosted 20 exhibitions totalling 700 exhibition days, including collection shows, regional artists and inbound touring exhibitions. The gallery also managed five outreach exhibitions to neighbouring communities. There were 11,815 visitors to the gallery with an average of 1,200 people visiting each of the 20 exhibitions offered.

Our future

With the Swan Hill Riverfront Masterplan rolling out, the Gallery is looking at the best ways for it to expand and redevelop. Plans have been developed and costed, with community consultation taking place in early 2015.

Plans have been developed and costed, with further community consultation to commence in 2015/16.

Education programs and workshops

School visits

We encourage you to include a program at the Gallery in your student’s visit to Swan Hill.  In a one hour visit to the Gallery student activities can include:

  • introduction to art galleries
  • viewing of current exhibition
  • practical hands-on activity
  • customised programs to meet your needs

School holiday programs

During each Victorian school holiday break, the Gallery offers a fun learning experience for children through a range of art workshops.

Each session is unique and offers children the chance to explore the Gallery display and then create their own unique artwork in response to what they have seen. A range of activities are offered and may include sculpture, drawing, artist book making or printmaking.

Guided tours

Bring your group along to learn of the Gallery’s colourful beginnings aboard the paddle steamer Gem and experience a unique insight into the current exhibition with a personalised gallery tour. Refreshments can be arranged.

Gallery shop

Our shop features beautiful handcrafted products made by local and regional artists, along with a small range of quality Australian made items. Complement your gift purchase with a greeting card featuring works from the collection.

Gallery hire

The Gallery is available for hire for a limited range of functions, depending on the available space and consideration to the impact on the exhibition program. The Main Gallery has been host to weddings, photo shoots, seminars, artist talks and more. Please contact the Gallery for more information.

Access Gallery

The Access Gallery is an exhibiting space where local emerging and professional artists can exhibit their work in a formal gallery setting. Community groups are often supported through complementary exhibitions. Interested artists are encouraged to contact the gallery to obtain an application form.

History

The Gallery was first established in 1966 and located on the paddle steamer Gem, operating under the management of the Pioneer Settlement Authority. It soon became evident that this unique location was inadequate for housing the growing permanent collection and the many touring exhibitions that were on offer. In 1974 the Gallery was officially established as part of the Regional Art Gallery Network in Victoria.

High community interest in the visual arts led to the establishment of The Art Associates Incorporated in 1982. This committee led the project to develop a purpose built gallery, supported by generous local patrons who worked tirelessly to raise funds and lobby government to ensure the building was completed.

The Australian woolshed was the inspiration for architect Ian Douglas. Beams and columns hewn from local redgum timber and wall panels of locally handmade mud bricks make up the main structure. The gallery opened in 1987 and in 1990 the building was extended to include the Access Gallery and a new entrance.

acreThe ACRE Project

ACRE is an ongoing project in communities along the Murray River in northern Victoria and southern NSW. Since 2009 the ACRE team has run seminars and workshops, hosted the international Arts and Agriculture resource ‘BIBLIOBOX’ and have supported two short film commissions. Since 2012, the ACRE team has also initiated regular artist on farm residencies, known as TWIG.

To contact the ACRE team, email itully@swanhill.vic.gov.au or you can find more information on the website www.acreart.wordpress.com