Charles Darwin University Art Collection and Art Gallery - Art Collector

Charles Darwin University Art Collection and Art Gallery by night. Courtesy: CDU, NT

The Charles Darwin University Art Gallery is located on the ground floor of the Chancellery on the Casuarina Campus of Charles Darwin University in Darwin. The gallery is the collection’s first permanent and dedicated exhibition and storage space since the collection was established in 1980.

The CDU Art Gallery was officially opened on 22 April 2010, coinciding with the Tiwi Design exhibition
Nyini parlingari purrupakuluwunyi, amintiya kiyi nyingani awarra Jilamara: Looking back, looking forward in our art. There have been 11 major exhibitions, including national and regional touring shows, held in the CDU Art Gallery since then.

The CDU Art Gallery is dedicated primarily to displaying the University Art Collection and exhibitions complementary to the collection’s holdings, which focus on art inspired by or with a connection to the Northern Territory and adjoining regions of Northern Australia, including Southeast Asia.

The collection

Established in 1980, initially as an art school teaching collection, the CDU Art Collection may be described as a North Australian Collection. On a national scale, it may be classified as a small to medium-sized Australian regional collection. Today, it numbers close to 2,500 objects and is the third largest collection of art held by a public institution in the Northern Territory.

The collection’s principal area of strength is works on paper by Australian Indigenous, non-Indigenous and Southeast Asian artists, inspired by or with a connection to the Northern Territory and adjoining regions of Northern Australia, including Southeast Asia.

A significant component of the collection comprises more than 1,000 limited edition prints of national and, in some instances, international significance, created under the auspices of CDU’s Northern Editions Printmaking Studio and its predecessor printmaking workshops and studios. Since 1993, workshop proofs of prints have been gifted to the collection by the university’s printmaking studio and artists who have worked there – principally, Australian Indigenous artists.

The collection’s other areas of strength, complementary to and related to the above, are drawings, paintings on paper and graphic work by contemporary Australian (including Indigenous) artists, dating from the early 1980s to the present; Australian political posters, prints and related graphic work dating from the early 1980s to the present; and paintings on linen and canvas by resident and visiting artists inspired by or connected to the Northern Territory, some with a relationship to the University’s School of Art.

Exhibition highlights

Darwin Festival Exhibition: Yirrkala Drawings
7 August 2014 to 3 October 2014
A touring exhibition from the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, in partnership with the Berndt Museum of Anthropology, The University of Western Australia, Perth. A beautifully produced and scholarly exhibition catalogue accompanies the exhibition with essays by Cara Pinchbeck (Curator), Professor Howard Morphy, Professor John Stanton and Andrew Blake.

Neridah Stockley: Solo Exhibition
13 November 2014 to 20 February 2015
Originally from Dubbo in New South Wales, Stockley was educated at the National Art School in Sydney, arriving in the Northern Territory in 2001. She resides in Alice Springs, which she calls her “base-camp” for plein air painting trips throughout Central Australia including Ilparpa Claypans, Nyirripi, Tennant Creek and the Western and Eastern MacDonnell Ranges. She has been referred to as "the Clarice Beckett of Alice Springs". Stockley has extended her practice through residencies in Falmouth and Wardlaw Point, Tasmania; the Pilbara region, as the Northern Territory winner of the Qantas Foundation Encouragement of Contemporary Australian Art Award in 2008; Fremantle, Western Australia; King Island, Victoria; and Newcastle, New South Wales. In early 2014, she undertook a residency through Bathurst Regional Gallery at Hill End, New South Wales.

Visitor information

CDU offers visitors the following facilities:
  • Air conditioning
  • Wheelchair accessible

Charles Darwin University Art Collection and Art Gallery
Building Orange 12.1.02, University Dirve South
Casuarina NT 0909

Phone: 08 8946 6621
Fax: 08 8946 7744

Open: Tuesday to Friday from 10am to 4pm and by appointment.