What to see at the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne: timetables, prices and advice

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Joel Fulleda

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

Author and references

The NGV, that is the National Gallery of Victoria, is the most important museum in Melbourne and, undoubtedly, one of the most prestigious in Australia, thanks to the exhibition of more than 60.000 works from the country and the rest of the world. It is divided into two sections, NGV International and NGV Australian, divided into neighboring but separate buildings, organized precisely by geographical origin of the works on display, as well as by artistic category.


  1. What to see and how to visit the National Gallery of Victoria
  2. Weeping women
  3. Self Portrait
  4. Cleopatra's banquet
  5. Untitled (Red)
  6. Void (Koku)
  7. Flannel flowers
  8. Swanston Street fron the Bridge
  9. Tingarri Dreaming at Tingarritjarra
  10. Tapu
  11. Collins St. 5 pm
  12. Hours and prices
  13. Online tickets and guided tours
  14. User questions and comments

What to see and how to visit the National Gallery of Victoria

The National Gallery of Victoria, also known by its acronym NGV, is one of the most important museums in Australia and is divided into two sections, each of them located in a well-defined building: NGV Australia and NGV International.
The two structures are 800 meters away from each other and are not connected: visiting both complexes, you will encounter ten pavilions, divided by origin of the works or by artistic category.
In particular, the thematic areas are the following: Asian art, Australian art, contemporary art, decorative art, contemporary architecture and design, fashion and textiles, indigenous art, international art, photography, prints and drawings.

The gallery also constantly hosts several temporary exhibitions therefore, during your stay in Melbourne, we invite you to consult the museum website to stay updated on current events.
Meanwhile, we suggest you the ten most important works on permanent display.

1 - Weeping women

The portrait of this woman belongs to the theme created by the same author in Guernica and reflects a detail extracted from the large painting itself: the pain of war and the agony of a woman who, in an attempt to escape the bombing, holds her dead son to her chest .

  • Author: Pablo Picasso
  • Year of realization: 1937
  • Location: NGV International

2 - Self-portrait

Warhol's self-portrait, made a few months before his death, wants to challenge the laws of expressionism, adopting a more superficial approach to art: in this work, in fact, emotions are lacking and the author appears as a disembodied mask , almost spooky.

  • Author: Andy Warhol
  • Year of realization: 1986
  • Location: NGV International

3 - Cleopatra's banquet

The first of three large paintings made with the oil painting technique, with this work the author wanted to pay homage to the King of Poland August III, creating a painting that could enrich the palace in Dresden.

  • Author: Gianbattista Tiepolo
  • Year of realization1743-1744
  • Location: NGV International

4 - Untitled (Red)

Although it is a painting of intermediate dimensions and characterized by the use of a single color, this painting manages to involve the spectators thanks to the various red pigments, which create movement and seem to embrace the viewer.

  • Author: Mark Rothko
  • Year of realization: 1956
  • Location: NGV International

5 - Void (Koku)

A three-dimensional shape made with bamboo weaving, which gives a feeling of structural solidity, despite the lightness of the natural materials used.

  • Author: Noriyoshi Sugiura
  • Year of realization: 1964
  • Location: NGV International

6 - Flannel flowers

A typical Australian flower, created by the painter specialized in the art of still life and modernism, who believed that each artist in the country should be inspired by typical Australian subjects.

  • Author: Margaret Preston
  • Year of realization: 1938
  • Location: NGV Australian

7 - Swanston Street fron the Bridge

This glimpse of the landscape, although still recognizable today, actually depicts elements that no longer exist, such as the church of Saint Paul, demolished in 1855 to make way for the current cathedral.

  • Author: Henry Burn
  • Year of realization: 1861
  • Location: NGV Australian

8 - Tingarri Dreaming at Tingarritjarra

It is the representation of a swamp, where several men of the Tingarri tribe encamped and gathered to celebrate rituals, before migrating east.

  • Author: Ronnie Tjampitjinpa
  • Year of realization: 1993
  • Location: NGV Australian

9 - Tapu

In this painting the artist depicts Tapu, her place of origin, where she lived with her parents until their death: through the splashes of colors, she expresses sandy hills and perforated rocks.

  • Author: Wakartu Cory Surprise
  • Year of realization: 1995
  • Location: NGV Australian

10 - Collins St. 5 pm

A trait of everyday life and city life in Melbourne in the 50s, represented through a monochrome parade of commuters leaving work that, even today, seems very current.

  • Author: John Brack
  • Year of realization: 1955
  • Location: NGV Australian

Hours and prices

  • both locations can be visited every day, from 10:00 to 17:00. Closed on December 25th. Opening hours for Anzac Day, 13:00 - 17:00
  • Best time to avoid queues: before 11:00
  • free in both locations

Online tickets and guided tours

Useful tips for visiting the attraction

  1. Get up early: the ideal would be to reach the entrance by 10:00, especially if you want to enjoy the museum on your own, as tours start from 11:00 and there may be more crowds.
  2. Temporary exhibitions: although access to the museum is free, an entrance ticket may be required during temporary exhibitions.
  3. Watch out for restrictions: Some attractions and museums are not allowed to bring water or food - make sure you don't have any with you.
  4. Minimum time: we advise you to consider a minimum of four hours for the visit. The ideal would be to be able to dedicate a couple of hours per building.

Where is it and how to get to NGV International

  • On foot: 180 St Kilda Road, less than a kilometer from Melbourne Botanical Gardens and Shrine of Remembrance - Get directions
  • By tram: with tram lines 1, 3, 5, 6, 8, 16, 64, 67, 72 - Centro delle Arti stop
  • By train: Flinders Street stop and cross the bridge past the Victorian Arts Center

Where is it and how to get to NGV Australian

  • On foot: Federation Square, 100 meters from Princess Bridge and 250 meters from St. Paul's Cathedral - Get directions
  • By tram: with tram lines 1, 3, 5, 6, 8, 16, 64, 67, 70, 72, 75 and City Circle - Flinders Street stop
  • By train: Flinder Street stop, adjacent to Federation Square

Historical notes and curiosities: what to know in brief

The museum, founded in 1861, preserves and displays more than 60.000 works, referable to different cultures and eras. Most of the collections come from state purchases or donations.
The historic headquarters of the NGV is located in St. Kilda Road. Only later was the section in Federation Square added, with works dedicated to Australian art.

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