The Public Gallery Association of Victoria (PGAV) is the peak body for the public gallery sector in Victoria. We represent 50 galleries across metropolitan and regional Victoria. As the peak body, we deliver programs to support the development of the sector, we advocate on behalf of the sector and we promote the sector to key stakeholders and audiences. The work we do is aimed at building the capacity of public galleries in Victoria, enabling our members to present engaging visual art experiences which deliver valuable social, economic and cultural returns to their communities.
Public galleries collect, conserve, exhibit and promote engagement with the visual arts. Importantly, they are the conduit between visual artists and their audiences. Through benchmarking of the sector in 2016, we learned that our members presented 723 exhibitions, 2,152 public programs and 1,426 education programs featuring 3,505 visual artists. Significantly, our members attracted 5.4 million visitors over the last twelve months. We also learned that public galleries in Victoria hold over 753,000 items in their collections with a combined worth of $4.8 billion. The public gallery sector is a significant segment of the creative industries in Victoria and a major contributor to the cultural, artistic, social and economic wealth of the state.
The PGAV has undertaken extensive research of the public gallery sector, its supporters and audiences over the past six years. This has spanned consultation with our members, stakeholders in government, the private and philanthropic sectors, the national public gallery sector, other peak bodies supporting the visual arts in Australia, the media and audiences. This research has identified the key challenges and opportunities facing the public gallery sector in Victoria.