Frequently Asked Questions

Related Information

Current visitor information

Q. What spaces are open?
A.  While we undertake exciting redevelopment works, visitor access is from the Beaufort Street entrance with Pulse Perspectives on display in the Centenary Galleries. From 29 May to 19 July Balancing Act and the Tom Malone Prize are on display in the main gallery building with access via Beaufort Street. All other gallery spaces remain closed until the redevelopment works are complete. The AGWA Shop is only available online during this period. 

Q. Do you offer children's activities and guided tours?
A. Children's activities and guided tours are postponed until the rooftop redevelopment works are complete.

Q. Can we still visit as a school?
A. Until further notice, bookings for between now and the end of August are only being taken for self-guided visits of Pulse Perspectives. All other workshops, guided tours and visual analysis are postponed until further notice. Please contact educate@artgallery.wa.gov.au for more information or to book.

Q. Is the AGWA Gallery Shop open?
The Shop is closed until further notice. You can continue to shop online at shop.artgallery.wa.gov.au

Q. When do you expect the Gallery to fully reopen?
A. To ensure a high level of visitor experience, the Gallery will remain closed until the redevelopment works are complete. COVID-19 supply issues and latent building conditions are impacting on the completion date although we expect it to be mid-year.

Q. What is the end benefit of the redevelopment works? 
A. The rooftop redevelopment will bring new contemporary art spaces, a rooftop sculpture walk and 360 views. Aligned with this, the Gallery is refreshing internal galleries and the display program to transform the visitor experience when we reopen. You can find out more about the rooftop redevelopment works here

COVID-19

Q. Do I need to register my details to enter the Gallery?
A. All Gallery visitors will need to register their details for contact tracing via the SafeWA app or an electronic sign-in sheet. Every person over the age of 16 is required to register independently of each other. If you have a function at the Gallery, each guest will need to register when they arrive at the Gallery.

Q. Is there a restriction on numbers?
A. Yes, the 2 square metre rule remains in place, but this can be accommodated in most instances.

Q. Can I bring my children to the Gallery?
A. Yes, of course. We do request that children are supervised at all times while in the Gallery space, and they adhere to physical distancing rules.

Hours and charges

Q. When is the Gallery open?
A. 10am-5pm, Wednesday – Mondays. We are closed on Tuesdays, Christmas Day and Good Friday.

Q. Is there an entry charge?
A. Admission to the Gallery is free however, donations are always welcomed. On occasion, there may be an admission charge for special exhibitions.

Q. Do carers have to pay entry to special exhibitions?
A. Entry is free for carers accompanying a disabled visitor. Companions cards are also accepted.

Q. Why is there a charge for entry into some exhibitions?
A. The cost of bringing exhibitions from interstate or overseas is supported by revenue generating programs (entry fees, functions, etc) and sponsorship. In turn, this income supports the Art Gallery of Western Australia's ability to present a diverse range of exhibitions. 

Q. Why is the Gallery closed on Tuesdays?
A. Closing the Gallery one day a week ensures the Gallery maintains the quality of exhibitions and accompanying programs, and allows Gallery staff to accomplish tasks such as major work installation and collection care, minimising disruption to visitors on the other six days of the week. Tuesday closure means the Gallery can remain open all weekend and on public holiday Mondays, so as not to impact visitors' enjoyment of the Gallery over long weekends. In major cities overseas most cultural institutions close one day a week, for example the Louvre and Musée d'Orsay in Paris and the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York.  

Exhibitions and Events

Q. What exhibitions and collection displays are currently showing at the Gallery?
A. Visit our What's on section for information on current exhibitions, displays and events.

Tours

Q. Does the Gallery conduct guided tours?
A. Guided tours are postponed until the redevelopment works are complete. We will then resume our free, daily public Wesfarmers Arts Walk-in Tours of the Collection and exhibitions.

Q. Can the Gallery provide a special tour for my group? 
A. Guided tours are postponed until the redevelopment works are complete. Customised tours will resume after this time and can be arranged through the Public Programs office. Our tours are free, however, a minimum of four weeks' notice is required. For details and to book, visit Tours and Talks.

Volunteers

Q. Do you have a volunteer program?
A. Yes. Volunteers contribute to the day-to-day smooth running of the Gallery. Their assistance with Information Desk, Tours and AGWA Learning is supported by the Gallery's ongoing volunteer training schemes. The Gallery recruits most volunteers on an ongoing basis.  Recruitment for Voluntary Gallery Guides is generally held every two years. For more information visit Volunteering.

Conservation and Artwork Valuation

Q. Can the Gallery provide a valuation for an artwork that I own?
A. No, the Gallery is not able to provide valuations. The Australian Government’s Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts provides a list of approved valuers which can be accessed here.

Q. Can the Gallery repair an artwork that I own?
A. No, Gallery staff cannot advise or repair/conserve your work of art. Visit the Australian Institute for the Conservation of Cultural Material to access a searchable directory which can be used to find qualified conservators in your State working in commercial practice.

Q. How long do you spend on a treatment? 
A. The length of a conservation treatment is dictated by the needs of the object. In some cases it can take as long as eighteen months.

Q. How do I become a conservator? 
A. Conservation is a professional career, and as such requires both university qualifications and training. In Australia, the two training providers are the University of Canberra (undergraduate), and the University of Melbourne (postgraduate).

Q. Do you take on conservation volunteers or interns? 
A. The Gallery’s priority is to take on interns who are currently undertaking or have completed their conservation studies. Occasionally we do take on conservation volunteers for specific projects. The latter positions are advertised through the Gallery's Volunteer page.

Q. Where can I find out more about conservation in Australia?
A. You can visit the Australian Institute for the Conservation of Cultural Material (AICCM) which is the professional body for conservation practice in Australia. Here you will find information about conservation, including caring for your artwork or collections, projects being undertaken or how to become a trained conservator.

Research

Q. I need information for a school assignment on a Western Australian artist can you help?
A. No, our Library is not for general public use/access. We recommend you source information via your own local library or the Internet.  The metropolitan university libraries at Curtin and The University of Western Australia have comprehensive art libraries. You do not have to be a student of the University to use them for research purposes, only if you want to borrow a book.

The following art directories are available at the State Library of Western Australian (Alexander Library):

  • The Dictionary of Art  - Ed. Jane Turner, 1996: 34 volumes
  • The Oxford Dictionary of Art  - Ed. Ian Chilvers & Harold Osborne, 1997.

If the information you seek concerns a living artist, their details may be listed with either Artsource +61 8 9226 2122 or in the Community Arts & Culture Directory, which is part coordinated through Community Arts Network +61 8 9226 2422.

General

Q. What’s on display?
A. The State Art Collection has over 17,000 artworks, of which approximately 10% are on display in the gallery at any one time. Displays may include paintings, prints, sculpture, photography and craft. The Gallery has both historical and contemporary works, and an excellent display of Indigenous art. Collection displays are rotated regularly and are supported by a program of temporary exhibitions. 

Q. Can I take photographs in the Gallery?
A. Yes, visitors are permitted to take photographs with hand-held devices in non-restricted public areas within the Art Gallery of Western Australia for personal use only. The use of tripods, flash or additional lighting is not permitted. Images photographed under this policy cannot be reproduced, displayed on personal websites, or used commercially.

Some areas of the Gallery and/or some temporary exhibitions may, at various times, be excluded from this policy. These areas will display signage at the entrance of the exhibition or gallery space advising of the photography restrictions. 

Q. Can I sketch in the Gallery?
A. Yes, pencil only (no ink, oil paint, watercolours – chalk-based products and charcoal are not permitted in the Gallery spaces as dust picked up by the air-conditioning may damage artworks). Easels or stools are not permitted while sketching – use a hand held pad of paper, the maximum size sketchbook allowed in the Gallery is the A3 size. If galleries are crowded, guards may ask visitors to stop sketching.

Q. Does the Gallery sell artworks?
A. No, the Art Gallery of Western Australia is not a commercial art gallery and therefore does not sell works of art. 

Q. Does the Gallery conduct art workshops?
A. Yes, the Gallery offers classes through our Events program. Visit Talks & Workshops for details. 

Q. Can I take my water bottle or food into the gallery spaces? 
A. No, food and beverage are not permitted in the exhibition galleries. This precaution ensures that our works of art are protected against accidental and costly damage.

Q. Why are some works behind glass?
A.  Some works are behind glass as a precaution measure to protect the surface from accidental handling or damage. It helps to preserve works for future generations.

Q. Why is it so cold? 
A. The materials that make up an artwork last longer in cooler temperatures. In addition, fluctuations in temperature could have damaging effects on many of the works on display. That is why the temperature within the Gallery is maintained at specific constant levels that accord with international art museum standards to ensure that all works are displayed in the best possible environment that reduces the risk of damage.

Q. Is there a WiFi internet service I can use at the Gallery?
A. Gallery WIFI will be unavailable during the rooftop redevelopment project closure, from 27 April 2021 until further notice.

The view is changing. During AGWA’s redevelopment works, entry is via Beaufort St. Details