Saturday, November 3, 2012

Riding To The NGA

When we were discussing our trip to Canberra as part of the Human Brochure on the Arts & Culture stream, we really hoped that we would be going the the National Gallery of Australia. Sadly this wasn't the case.

However we did have some spare time between arriving at the hotel and the welcoming event. Knowing this and that at the Diamant Hotel, where were staying has bikes to borrow, our plan was to ride to the National Gallery and check it out for ourselves.

To make things even better, the staff at the Diamant Hotel had put together a little welcoming gift bag full of goodies, including tickets to the Sydney Long exhibition at the National Gallery of Australia.

It was a short and easy 15min bike ride from the hotel to the gallery, we rode along the banks of Lake Burley Griffin. Stopping every so often to look at some of the buildings and attractions along the way.
Jackson Pollock - Blue Poles
On first arriving at the National Gallery we checked out the Abstract Expressionism exhibition which provides the opportunity to experience the quality and depth of the National Gallery's collection. Including the infamous piece by Jackson Pollock, Blue Poles.

 Salvador Dali - Lobster Telephone
Next to the Abstract Expressionism exhibition was a stunning of collection of Impressionism, Fauvism and the School of Paris, Ballets Russes, Dada and Surrealism, Cubism, Expressionism, Abstraction, Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art, Minimalism, Conceptual Art and Contemporary works. I know it seems like a lot but they do fit into 3 gallery spaces and they just so happen to be my favourite periods of art.

This was where I had the opportunity to view yet again one of my favourite works by Andy Warhol, Electric Chair. I like this piece as it makes me wonder if he had done more controversial works would he still be seen in the same light as we see him in today.

Walking through these gallery spaces was made extra special as my plus one for the weekend has a solid and deep understanding of the Bauhaus movement. Some of the works on display were by artists of this period. I felt pretty special.

One piece on display that needs to be experienced is the piece Hat Rack by Marcel Duchamp. I wonder just how visitors don't even see it. For me it's a piece that shows surrealism at it's best. I would share with you a picture of it but I don't want to give it away. You really need to see it for yourself.

Winding our way through the gallery we made our way to the Sydney Long exhibition. Sydney Long is  best described as Australia’s foremost Art Nouveau style painter and a major Symbolist. It was a magically experience to be amongst so many of his works.

We checked out the permanent collections and the other two temporary exhibitions, photographic works by Carol Jerrems and Word Pictures a collection of artworks about words. The National Gallery of Australia has truly an amazing collection and the temporary exhibitions we visited we're all well worth seeing. We will be going back there next time we're in Canberra for sure.

Abstract Expressionism is only on until the 20 January 2013 and the Sydney Long exhibition runs until 11 November, make sure you go along to see them. 


  1. Wow, well done on your efficient use of the little bit of free time we had!
    The East Hotel had the free bike option too - what a great initiative!
    So glad you got to squeeze in the NGA, would have been a shame to miss it!

    1. Thank you Tash, I think all hotels should offer bicycles. Such a great way to see so much more than just hoping in a cab or on a bus.




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