From next Monday 1 June, free timed-entry tickets, physical distancing, no cloaking and BYO water bottles are among the measures the Art Gallery of NSW is implementing as it reopens to the public.
These measures are in line with the NSW Governments health guidelines to keep visitors safe during COVID-19.
Gallery director Michael Brand said while fewer visitors will be in the Gallery together, and with no groups and tours scheduled, the benefit for art lovers is a more intimate, up-close and personal experience of art than was possible pre-COVID-19.
Physical proximity to art in the flesh is the most satisfying way to experience a work and were so thrilled to be able to open our doors again for visitors to enjoy this experience, Brand said.
While the ideal experience of art is in person, the Gallery will maintain its online presence through Together In Art for those who wish or need to stay at home a while longer, Brand said.
The Gallerys priority for its reopening is to keep visitors and staff safe. Understanding that people might be cautious about returning to the Gallery, and knowing it wont be the same experience as it was before COVID-19, Brand is hopeful that the pleasure of being back in the presence of art will outweigh the inconvenience of necessary safety measures.
The measures weve thoughtfully prepared in line with the NSW governments health guidelines and international art museum best practice during COVID-19 will actually provide our visitors comfort.
After all, while we need to do things differently right now, our remit as the state art museum hasnt changed were still here to provide as many people as possible access to great art, Brand said.
Visitors to the Gallery will be able to enjoy, free of charge, the collection galleries, the 22nd Biennale of Sydney: NIRIN and four exhibitions, including the newly opened Some Mysterious Process, curated by Gallery director Michael Brand, exploring 50 years of collecting international contemporary art; Shadow catchers, which investigates the way shadows, body doubles and mirrors haunt our understanding of photography and the moving image; Under the stars, which presents stargazing and mapping by Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists, highlighting our shared understandings of the night sky; and In one drop of water, which explores the poetic, symbolic and social significance of water in Asian art.
There will be no tours or public programs, including Art After Hours on Wednesday evenings so the Gallery will close at 5pm on Wednesdays.
Free timed-entry tickets can now be booked online
From 4 June 2020, the Brett Whiteley Studio will reopen to limited numbers of visitors from 10am to 4pm Thursday Sunday. Visitors will be required to provide name and contact details upon arrival to support contact tracing. Tickets for the Studio are not required.
Bookings for education groups are postponed until further notice.