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Latrobe Local News:
End of Stage-one of Gallery redevelopment acclaimed

The conclusion of work celebrated with unveiling of a ceremonial plaque, the Honourable Peter Mc Gauran.

By Latrobe City Council - 15th March 2001 - Back to News

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The conclusion of work on stage-one of the Latrobe Regional Gallery has been celebrated with the unveiling of a ceremonial plaque by the Member for Gippsland and Minister for the Arts and Centenary of Federation, the Honourable Peter Mc Gauran.

Latrobe City Mayor, Councillor Tony Hanning, said the completion of stage-one was an exciting mile-stone in providing the region with a state-of-the-art Gallery.

“Stage-one has developed the fundamentals for creating a Gallery that will eventually increase the three exhibition spaces to eight, allowing far more of the Gallery’s collection to be displayed. A new foyer, a new façade more suitable for an art gallery, and the installation of a lift, are all key components of this stage. This is the foundation upon which a Gallery will be built that will be a focal point for the arts in Gippsland,” Cr Hanning said.

“This first stage of the Gallery redevelopment has been made possible through a grant from the Commonwealth Government’s Federation Fund. We are grateful for the Federal funding, as this has been a considerable springboard upon which to build.

Minister for the Arts and the Centenary of Federation, Peter McGauran, said the Centenary of Federation was a prime opportunity for all Australians to share pride in our nation’s achievements.

“The Federal Government’s $1 billion Federation Fund is supporting a diverse range of infrastructure projects across the country, creating lasting memorials to the centenary of our nationhood,” Mr McGauran said.

“Under the Federation Fund initiative, the Federal Government has allocated $12 million to support a major program of refurbishment, redevelopment and expansion of Victoria’s network of regional galleries.

“Reinvigorating these regionally based public art galleries will enable them to preserve and display their rich collections of heritage pieces, further their high quality exhibition programs and attract new audiences,” Mr McGauran said.

“The Federation Fund has provided $550,000 to develop a master plan for the redevelopment and refurbishment of the Latrobe Regional Art Gallery,” Mr McGauran said.

“The Gallery has a strong collection of contemporary Australian artwork illustrating the creative output of Gippsland artists over the last three decades.

“In this respect, the collection is a precious and irreplaceable record of the development of our nation, and the Gallery’s improved accreditation rating will allow it to host major travelling exhibitions and appropriately display the permanent collection,” Mr McGauran said.

Councillor Hanning said that an integral part of meeting the necessary requirements was the provision of access to the collection for those unable to climb steps or those wheelchair bound.

“Few public buildings these days limit the publics’ access, in fact new buildings are always designed with equitable access determined as part of the structure. The buildings which comprise the Latrobe Regional Gallery were considered appropriate in their day, but were found unsuitable when today’s expectations are considered,” Cr Hanning said.

“Council is delighted that when the Gallery is reopened, thousands of citizens and visitors who were previously unable to view the exhibition program because they were physically challenged by the stairs, will now be able to discover the treasures many have enjoyed for years.

“In marking the completion of Stage-one, here today, we are reminded of the enormous task still to be undertaken. That work is embodied in Stage-two, which is about to commence with an historic ceremony next Friday,” Cr Hanning concluded.

Media Enquiries:

Cr. Tony Hanning, Mayor, Latrobe City
tel. 0417 373 577

Cr. Brendan Jenkins, Deputy Mayor, Latrobe City
tel. 0417 374 590

Ms. Penny Holloway, Chief Executive Officer,
tel. 5173 1401 or 0417 557 103

Jeremy Bein, Public Relations and Communications Officer,
tel. 5173 1468


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