Australia’s second largest city Melbourne is renowned for its enthralling arts scene. With its vast wealth of cultural and artistic institutions, it’s no wonder that it is often referred to as the cultural capital of Australia. Here are the top 10 contemporary art galleries in this bustling metropolis.
Melbourne is a great place to visit for anyone looking for interesting art experiences – the city is home to all kinds of galleries, as well as countless underground studios and art spaces. It’s impossible to go to Melbourne and not see a striking work of art in one form or another, whether it’s one of the city’s many outdoor sculptures, a piece in a gallery, or some of the street and graffiti art for which the city has become famous.
The Lyon Housemuseum consists of two parts – the original house museum, where founding patrons Corbett and Yueji Lyon live, which is open for pre-booked tours on certain days each year, and the new public Housemuseum Galleries. These opened in March 2019 and showcase both national and international art exhibitions, as well as architecture and design shows. Both spaces were designed by Corbett Lyon himself, an architect, and the striking, geometric designs are worth a visit in themselves. The Lyons’ collection of Australian contemporary art consists of more than 350 works by over 50 artists, and is one of the largest of its kind in Australia. Artists include Brook Andrew, Howard Arkley, Patricia Piccinini, Callum Morton, Shaun Gladwell, Daniel von Sturmer and Daniel Crooks.
Buxton Contemporary is one of the newest art galleries in Melbourne. It opened in 2018 at the Victorian College of the Arts, the University of Melbourne’s art school. As well as its four exhibition galleries, it boasts the largest outdoor screen in Australia dedicated to the display of moving image art. The Buxton collection, which was donated to the university by art collector and property developer Michael Buxton, contains more than 350 major artworks and focuses on contemporary Australian art, making Buxton a great place to visit for those who want to discover the country’s most exciting artists. And it’s not just exhibitions on the programme here – Buxton Contemporary also uses the collection as inspiration for performance, research, teaching and publishing.
Cajsa Carlson contributed additional reporting to this article.