NGV extends hours following record-breaking year

National Gallery of VictoriaThe National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) will open for seven days a week from October 2015 following record-breaking attendance in 2014-15. Minister for Creative Industries Martin Foley said close to 2.3 million people visited the NGV in the 2014-15 financial year, an increase of almost 12 per cent from  2013-14.

“Our NGV is the oldest public art museum in the country, having played a role in Australia’s creative and cultural life for more than 150 years,” said Minister Foley. “These record attendances are a testament to the NGV’s ability to attract and inspire audiences of all ages.”

“This means more Victorians and visitors from elsewhere will have a chance to experience its exquisite collection, exhibition program and extensive free program.”

From October, both the NGV International on Melbourne’s St Kilda Road and The Ian Potter Centre at Federation Square will remain open seven days a week for the first time since 2005.

2014-15 was a blockbuster year for the NGV with the Australian-exclusive exhibition The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier attracting more than 226,000 visitors and becoming the NGV’s most successful summer contemporary exhibition on record. The exhibition included sold out public programs including the popular Friday Nights music series, which was attended by 31,000 people.

The number of children visiting increased by more than 20 per cent, with 283,000 children visiting the NGV, including 86,000 children who saw the interactive exhibition Express Yourself! Romance Was Born for Kids at NGV International.

‘‘Seven-day access will give all Victorians and interstate and international visitors the opportunity to visit the National Gallery of Victoria at a time that suits them,” says NGV Director, Tony Ellwood. ‘’We are looking forward to sharing a diverse range of contemporary and historical exhibitions, including our Melbourne Winter Masterpieces and NGV Summer series, with our growing audiences.’’

The NGV’s next major exhibition is Masterpieces from the Hermitage: The Legacy of Catherine the Great. Part of the Melbourne Winter Masterpieces series, the exhibition will bring together more than 450 works from the personal collection of Catherine the Great, with many pieces travelling to Australia for the first time. The exhibition opens on Friday 31 July 2015.

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Image: National Gallery of Victoria