Rockhampton Art Gallery - Art Collector

Installation view of Rockhampton Art Gallery. Courtesy: Rockhampton Art Gallery, QLD

Rockhampton Art Gallery was established in 1967 and houses a group of mid 20th century paintings and works on paper that is arguably the finest in regional Queensland, and one of the most significant in regional Australia.

From the gallery’s foundation, the collection housed a small number of works by Australian and British artists. But it was in 1976 that the Rockhampton collection gained momentum with the establishment of an Art Acquisition Fund by then-Mayor Rex Pilbeam, Bishop John Bayton, Architect Neil McKendry, and Director of Rockhampton Art Gallery Don Taylor.

The fund raised approximately $500,000 through public subscription with subsidies from Rockhampton City Council and a substantial grant from the Australia Council. Significant works of art were purchased including works by Charles Blackman, Arthur Boyd, Sidney Nolan, Russell Drysdale, John Brack, Fred Williams, Grace Cossington Smith and Jeffrey Smart.

The collection

Rockhampton Art Gallery's collection represents a cross-section of central Queensland interests and influences: modern and contemporary Australian art, Japanese and British Art, and art and artefacts of central Queensland.

The gallery's collection strengths are modern Australian paintings, a collection of sporting memorabilia on world tennis champion Rod Laver, and a collection of 150 contemporary British prints gifted by Dr Douglas Kagi.

Exhibition hightlights

Cream: Four Decades of Australian Art is a Rockhampton Art Gallery exhibition toured by Museum and Gallery Services Queensland. Cream is drawn from Rockhampton Art Gallery's remarkable collection of modern art. This exhibition is by no means a definitive history of Australian art from 1940 to 1980, but Cream does chronicle the development of modernism in Australia and articulate its stylistic diversity and its influences. This exhibition is on display at Rockhampton Art Gallery until 27 April 2014, and will then tour to nine venues in Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland until the 2016 summer.

Other exhibition highlights include
The Gold Award Showing from 4 July 2014 to 31 August 2014 and Dreaming Art Deco showing from 6 February 2015 to 24 May 2015.

Art awards

In 2010, Rockhampton Art Gallery Trust received a substantial bequest from the estate of Moya Gold (1928-2000) for the acquisition of Australian paintings. The Gold Award honours the memory of Moya Gold, philanthropist and educator who understood the joys and opportunities that the arts and education can bring. Designed as an invitation award to acquire contemporary Australian art, the most outstanding work or works by an artist are awarded a cash prize of $50,000. The works are then acquired by Rockhampton Art Gallery.


Friends of Rockhampton Art Gallery receive invitations to all exhibition openings and public programs; 10 percent off at the gallery shop; and are active in fundraising and acquiring works of art for the collection

Annual membership: $25 single, $40 couple
Lifelong membership: $250

Visitor information

A diverse range of education and public programs are offered to visitors of all ages, from toddlers through to lifelong learners, supported by Rockhampton Regional Council, Rockhampton Art Gallery Trust and Friends of Rockhampton Art Gallery.

Rockhampton Art Gallery Offers visitors the following facilities:

  • Air conditioning
  • Wheelchair accessible

Rockhampton Art Gallery
62 Victoria Parade
Rockhampton QLD 4700

Phone: 07 4936 8248
Fax: 07 4936 8838
Open: Daily from 10am to 4pm. Closed Public Holidays.