We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of New South Wales stands.

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Enchanting cities Be inspired to travel



International travel is back! Before you book anything, join us for another series of inspiring talks as we explore four enchanting cities around the world. From Urfa and Padua to Auckland and Madrid, these vibrant and diverse cities will capture your heart and encourage you to plan your next international travel adventure.

Enchanting cities Be inspired to travel

Saturdays 13 August – 3 September 2022 

Art Gallery of NSW

🛈 Find out what you need to know before visiting

Per lecture
$45 non-member
$35 member

Series subscription
$170 non-member
$130 member

Bookings and enquiries: 02 9225 1878


Transaction terms and conditions, including cancellations and refunds

If purchasing tickets on behalf of other attendees, the ticket purchaser is responsible for communicating all correspondence from the Art Gallery Society of NSW to those attendees.

  • Urfa/Edessa/Harran/Gobleki Tepe

    Join archaeologist Iain Shearer as he mesmerises us with the history of Urfa, a truly enchanted city. Urfa, 'City of Prophets', was shaped by our most ancient ancestors, without metal or the wheel, 12,000 years ago at enigmatic Gobleki Tepe. Locals still worship at a beautiful mosque dedicated to the prophet Abraham’s memory, complete with pool of sacred fish originally dedicated to Persian Anahita, or Sumerian Nana. Romans, Byzantines, and Crusader knights created stunning mosaics, icons and devotional chant. An Islamic university dominates ruined Harran, saved by Harun al-Rashid, Caliph of ‘One thousand and one nights.’

    Iain Shearer, archaeologist and lecturer, was educated at University College London’s Institute of Archaeology. Iain is the former Sackler Scholar for Afghanistan and Iran at The British Museum and was appointed a Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland in 2008. 

    This talk will be held in the Domain Theatre, lower level 3.

    Saturday 13 August 2022 10.30–11.30am

  • Padua

    Be enthralled by Padua, just as artists the like of Altichiero, Donatello, Mantegna and Titian would all leave their mark on this city and which Shakespeare referred to as “fair Padua, nursery of arts”. Padua or Patavium as the Ancient Romans referred to it, with claims positioning it as the oldest city in northern Italy, was according to Virgil’s Aeneid founded by the Trojan hero Antenor. A prosperous commercial centre, during the early Renaissance it passed under the rule of the Most Serene Republic of Venice and indeed is connected to La Serenissima via the Brenta Canal on the shores of which the wealthy Venetians would build their Summer palazzi. Padua itself is home to one of Italy’s oldest Universities established in 1222, the Scrovegni Chapel decorated by Giotto in 1305 and the resplendent basilica of San Antonio.

    Lorraine Kypiotis is passionate about art and education. She is a senior lecturer in Art History and Theory at the National Art School in Sydney. She is also currently the Education Outreach Coordinator and manages a number of metropolitan, regional and interstate programs. Lorraine is also a popular guest lecturer at the Art Gallery of NSW and leads tours to Italy for Renaissance Tours.

    This talk will be held in the Centenary Auditorium, lower level 1.

    Saturday 20 August 2022 10.30–11.30am

  • Auckland

    Come and discover what’s new in Auckland. Art lovers will be intrigued by the rich cultural life: Māori and Paheka artists, and Pasifika artists settled in the world’s largest Polynesian city, are thriving. The Māori name for Auckland is Tāmaki Makaurau—‘desired by many’because of its beauty and natural abundance. Set between two magnificent harbours, New Zealand’s largest city hums with life. From the West Coast’s black sand beaches to Waiheke Island in the Hauraki Gulf, from bustling gritty Karangahape Road to sophisticated downtown restaurants, from op shops to design icons, Auckland has it all.

    Julie Ewington is a writer, author and broadcaster. She is an authority on contemporary Australian art, especially art by women, and contemporary art from Southeast Asia.

    This talk will be held in the Centenary Auditorium, lower level 1.

    Saturday 27 August 2022 10.30–11.30am

  • Madrid

    Madrid is every bit enchanting with its elegant boulevards, expansive parks, royal palaces and charming plazas. Located at the geographical heart of the Iberian Peninsula, the Spanish capital boasts magnificent art treasures in The Prado, Thyssen-Bornemisza and Reina Sofía museums. Join Brian Ladd as he explores the art and architecture of this sophisticated city and reveals why its history and culture make Madrid so fascinating and enchanting.

    Brian Ladd is past President of the Art Gallery Society of New South Wales, a specialist in European and Australian sculpture, and a graduate in sculpture from the National Art School, Sydney. From 1996 to 2010 he was Head of Public Programs Department, Art Gallery of New South Wales, and responsible for enlivening the Gallery and engaging diverse audiences with art.

    This talk will be held in the Centenary Auditorium, lower level 1.

    Saturday 3 September 2022 10.30–11.30am

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