It’s time to stroll through your favourite regional art galleries

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It’s time to stroll through your favourite regional art galleries

Let's give the regional art scene the appreciation it deserves.

Victoria has some of the best artistic communities and spaces. With the ever-growing popularity of going regional, it is so important to check out all the wonderful artistic spaces we have here in regional Victoria. Whether you’re making a day trip or have lived in these towns all your life, there is plenty to do and see. Art galleries are the heart and soul of some of these areas and Victoria is constantly curating and finding works from artists of all varieties.

So let’s refresh our memories on regional art galleries – some new and others very familiar, to start your journey of understanding regional art.

Art Gallery of Ballarat

As Australia’s oldest regional gallery, guests will be swept away on arrival by the grand bluestone staircase before exploring the range of spaces from grand and elegant 19th century rooms to stunning contemporary additions within this heritage-listed building. Well worth visiting, this hidden gem features a range of Australian art on display with a strong representation of female artists and Indigenous artwork, and a varied program of temporary and contemporary exhibitions. Expect to take a walk through Australian history before indulging in a coffee and handmade chocolates at the in-house cafe.

The Art Gallery of Ballarat is located in Ballarat Central on Lydiard st North

Backspace Gallery Ballarat

Located on the very arts-focused Camp Street (located at the back of Art Gallery of Ballarat), the small space rarely disappoints with an ever-changing range of exhibitions as the true feature of this cutting edge destination. A local inclusive project, the Backspace Gallery strives to showcase contemporary art and craft design from within the region, giving local artists and curators the opportunity to exhibit in the public program. With free entry, this should be at the top of your ‘to do’ list on a cold Ballarat day.

Find all the latest works at 15 Camp Street Ballarat Central

Shearers Arms Gallery

Ran by the Geelong Art Society, this beauty aims to nurture and promote Visual Arts in the Geelong district. As a true community based organisation, the gallery holds various painting exhibitions throughout the year, including senior’s and VCE works, and features a variety of workshops on weekends. Bringing art, culture and heritage together seven days a week, this one is for local art lovers.

Located at 202 Arbedeen St Geelong West right across from Woolies

Geelong Gallery

Located in the heart of Geelong, this is the city’s major art gallery with a welcoming collection of 5000 Australian and European art from the 19th and 20th century. Featuring paintings, Australian sculpture, ceramics, paper works and decorative arts, the amazing display will keep you occupied for hours. Including optional public talks and guided tours, the gallery also holds special exhibitions each year that encompass the best in historical and contemporary art. Be sure to check out down stairs of the gallery before heading next door to see the Geelong library.

Situated in the heart of Geelong at 55 Little Malop St

Boom Gallery

Positioned near the banks of the Barwon River, this part gallery, part retail space, part cafe is a vibrant centre well worth the discovery. Focusing on active contemporary art and design, you will find the talents of emerging and established local creatives from Geelong and the surrounding area. With frequently changing exhibitions and a great range of art, it’s best to set aside a few hours and plan this visit around your lunch plans, with the cafe featuring genuine homemade treats, worthy of the trip alone. Also check out all their amazing jewellery and paintings for sale.

Check out the resident artists in Newtown on 11 Rutland St


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CASPA Gallery

In the richly artistic and historic town of Castlemaine, CASPA Gallery is a local artist run space. Devoted to promoting the wealth and diversity of contemporary art in the small city, CASPA features a new exhibition of visual art every month. Supporting emerging and established artists, the space also hosts a variety of music and performance events. Open every day, this is a good one to visit if you’re passing through with some spare time.

Located above Stoneman’s Bookshop, 101 Mostyn Street Castlemaine

Hue and Cry Collective

Known for its new and exciting exhibitions, this Geelong gallery welcomes art lovers from all levels of expertise. With residencies and their permanent collections, always keep up to date on their website of what’s coming up, there’s something for everyone. This one is also perfect for inspiring young artists!

Check it out on 64-66 Ryrie Street Geelong

Shepparton Art Museum

Only reopening this last year after a $50million facelift, Shepparton Art Museum encapsulates the thriving artistic community in Shepparton. With events, classes and exclusive interviews, SAM has a wide range of exciting and intriguing works. SAM features a lot of local and first nations artists’ works. Don’t forget to make a day of it and visit their shop and cafe onsite.

Head to 530 Wyndham St Shepparton to see the latest works

Analogue Academy

Picture this: you’re sitting in a cafe, sipping your oat milk latte wearing rolled-up jeans and a beanie, while waiting for the film pics you took over the weekend to be developed – the perfect hipster scene. Analogue Academy is part film lab, part art gallery and part café and bar lounge.

Find it at 23 Cuzens Pl, Geelong

Bendigo Art Gallery

Last but certainly not least, is the true gem that is the Bendigo Art Gallery. Featuring the Bendigo art prize every year as well as other popular attractions like the current Elvis exhibit everyone’s raving about, there is so much to explore here. With days dedicated to students from primary to VCE, this is the best place to learn and grow – no matter your artsy-ness.

Open every day (except Christmas) from 10am – 5pm, Bendigo Art Gallery is situated on 42 View Street Bendigo.

QDOS Fine Arts

Home to the famous Erskine Falls, Lorne is also known for its arts community. This gallery is unique as they focus solely on fine artists and only exhibit 10 solo exhibitions annually. That’s when you know the works are going to be super special. At the moment, virtual exhibitions are on offer, including the likes of Philip Adams, Ray Firth and James Davis. So have a quick squiz if you’re a fanatic for different landscape interpretations.

Where: 35 Allenvale Rd, Lorne

Lot 19

Lot 19 is a dynamic art space consisting of 21 artists’ studios, two outdoor stages, a contemporary art gallery, and an outdoor sculpture park. It’s the perfect picture of the creative community: from performers, musicians, ceramicists, printmakers, painters – how incredible!

Where: Lot19 Mcshanag Drive (off Langslow Street), Castlemaine

Convent Gallery

History nerd? Ok, you’ll get around Convent Gallery. Originally known as ‘Blarney Castle’ back in the 1860s Gold Rush, this gallery was initially built as a residence for the Gold Commissioner. Fast forward, it’s been transformed into a presbytery, a girls’ boarding school and now an art gallery in the space of over 150 years. Over-looking the beautiful greenery of Daylesford, the Convent Gallery feels like a magical, country haven: quaint and cosy. The art is sourced both nationally and internationally and is a mixture of all different styles and mediums. Don’t forget to stop and look at the Chapel and Atlas Bar, both perfect for a wedding event.

Where: 7 Daly St, Daylesford

The F Project

A self-funded, volunteer-run, community initiative. The F Project (no, not that F word) launched in 2008 when the Fletcher Jones Factory closed in Warrnambool, to help drive the local art community. These volunteers work with artists to exhibit their contemporary pieces, take them on a professional development journey and invite them to lead workshops and classes. Want to go but can’t get there? No worries. This gallery has a virtual 3D experience, taking you through the space so you can immerse in the artworks at home. Throw on some jazz music and your favourite going-out outfit – trust me, it’ll feel like (almost) the real thing.

Where: 224 Timor Street, Warrnambool