City Collection | Bequests

From Monday 20 December 2021 -  08:00am
To Sunday 13 March 2022 - 05:00pm

Monday 20 December 2021   08:00am


Gifts from the City of Bunbury Art Collection

Bequests and donations form a large part of the City of Bunbury Art Collection. These gifts enabled the City of Bunbury to acquire significant works of art which might otherwise be out of reach. Over 200 works have been donated either from private or corporate beneficiaries and have assisted the Art Collection to develop into one of the most significant collections in Regional Australia.

In 1948, the then town of Bunbury received 22 works donated by Perth philanthropist Claude Hitchin, with the aim to bring art to regional parts of Western Australia. This donation became the start of the Bunbury Art Collection. The Hotchin Bequest as it became known contained works by prominent Australian artists such as Hans Heysen, Albert Namatjira, Ernest Philpot, Kathleen O’Connor, and Elizabeth Durack.

In 2008, the City of Bunbury was again fortunate to receive a generous gift of artworks from Alcoa Australia. These works were part of a $3 million donation of works from their corporate collection to galleries and health care organisations across the country. Just as Hotchin wished to enrich the lives of people by making art accessible, Alcoa believes that access to art is essential to building healthy and creative communities.

Featured in the gift were works by Australia’s well known artists Arthur Boyd (senior and junior), Sir Sidney Nolan, Leonard Long and Ray Crooke. Works by these artists are highly sought after by public and private art collectors. West Australian well known artists such as Robert Juniper, Frank Norton and Wim Boissevain were also included in the gift.

BHP Billiton Worsley Alumina have financially assisted in acquiring artworks from the annual Noongar Country exhibition for years. This generous scheme helped shape the Indigenous component of the Art Collection.

Besides these corporate beneficiaries, the collection also includes many gifts from private donors, including artworks from the artists themselves.

Many of these donations have been made possible through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program. The Australian Taxation Office provides tax incentives to encourage gifts of culturally significant items from private collections to public institutions. This program has greatly supported and enhanced many public collections.

The City of Bunbury Art Collection has since grown to over 1000 artworks, including two- and three-dimensional works. The estimated value of the collection is in excess of two million dollars.


Image: Robert Johnson, The Farm Haystack (c. 1935), Oil on Plywood, 41 x 49cm, Claude Hotchin Bequest 1948




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