Historical interior artist’s impression of the central court of the National Art Gallery of New South Wales
20 Nov 1880
The Gallery’s first dedicated building was erected in the Domain in 1879 as a ‘Fine Arts Annexe’ to the Sydney International Exhibition of that year. It was designed by William Wardell, built of timber and about 4000 square metres in size. It contained nine galleries and a corridor. During the International exhibition only part of the Gallery’s collection was exhibited in this building, with galleries also given over to temporary exhibits from Austria, Germany, Great Britain, France and Belgium. When the International exhibition closed, the trustees were successful in having this building entirely dedicated as the “Art Gallery of New South Wales”, despite the efforts of government architect James Barnet to have the annexe demolished and the collection of the Art Gallery of New South Wales housed in the Garden Palace. The Governor Lord Loftus officially dedicated the building as the “Art Gallery of New South Wales” on 20 September 1880. This wood engraving was made shortly after the opening and published in ‘The Australasian sketcher’ on 20 November 1880.
The new art gallery, Sydney
20 Nov 1880
gelatin silver photograph of a wood engraving
17.0 x 21.8 cm
Signature & date
Not signed. Not dated.
National Art Archive. Art Gallery of New South Wales Institutional archive
Not on display