Image courtesy John Gollings AM. © John Gollings Photography.

The Shepparton Art Museum has just opened their new building Victoria and to celebrate, the SAM is showcasing at nine free exhibitions!

The Shepparton Art Museum (SAM) has been around since 1936 and has done nothing but grow since then. The newest addition to the SAM has been in the works since 2013 when the SAM Foundation was established to raise money for a new and expanded SAM to grow the art collection.

People were enthusiastic. A generous offer was made by Carillo Gantner who would donate around $2 million worth of Aboriginal art to the Shepparton Art Museum if the upgrade went ahead. In addition, $1.5 million over 10 years was promised from the Copulos Family. Since there was such support from the community, the Greater Shepparton City Council approved the new building.


The new building itself features a brilliant contemporary style designed by internationally renowned architect firm, Denton Corker Marshall. The façade of the building is made up of four L-shaped plates of differing heights. The plates are each a different metallic finish: matt soft charcoal above the entry, low sheen zinc on the southern side, ochre-red corten steel on the lake and river plain, and metallic mid-grey on the side facing the park.

The new five-story building houses the Museum proper, the visitor centre, the Kaiela Art Gallery and Studio, a café, event space, and a roof top viewing deck.

SAM Artistic Director & CEO, Rebecca Coates said of the opening,

“It has been a much anticipated moment and we are delighted to finally welcome visitors and our community to the new SAM. The free exhibitions, outstanding artists and art commissions, supported by programs that engage, inspire and inform, are all housed in a world-class new building which is changing the agenda for what Shepparton is known for. SAM has been designed as a live building where every surface presents an opportunity to display and be surrounded by art and experience, whether you go to the cafe, drop into the shop or even drive past at night when the gallery is closed. We are proud to be putting Shepparton on the cultural map and to contribute to radically changing this unique part of regional Victoria.”

The museum is now hosting nine free exhibitions, four new commissioned artworks, and over 200 artist contributions. The works of over 200 artists and 160 Indigenous and First Nations artworks can be found here.

Featured artists include Lin Onus, Maree Clarke, Pierre Mukeba, Amrita Hepi, Anne-Marie May, James Geurts, Louisa Bufardeci, and many more!


Lin Onus, Yorta Yorta, Barmah Forest, 1995. The Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment Collection © and courtesy the Lin Onus Estate.

Premiering during the opening is ‘Flow: Stories of River, Earth, and Sky’ that showcases over 60 artists from SAM’s collection but that isn’t all! Major new acquisitions are included as well including Australia’s largest holding of works by the extended Namatjira family plus works from the Carillo and Ziyin Gantner Collection of Australian Indigenous Art.

The Shepparton Art Museum’s exhibitions are on view from Monday to Sunday with the exception of holidays.