National Portrait Gallery, Canberra
(4.6/5 based on 1,200+ reviews on the web)
Opened in 2008 and conveniently located on King Edward Terrace, National Portrait Gallery displays nearly 400 portraits of prominent Australians who have helped shaped their nation. Portraits exhibited here represent a variety of media and are displayed in several galleries, each symbolizing a different era of the country's history. The venue often hosts temporary exhibitions from around the world, as well as lectures and seminars by well-known art scholars and historians. Visitors have access to several public areas inside or next to this building, including a small cafe, an events room, a theater, a well-stocked bookstore, and secure parking. Plan to visit National Portrait Gallery during your Canberra vacation using our convenient Canberra itinerary maker.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • A fresh perspective - great portrait art of many styles, and quirky exhibitions. Add to that a great book/gift shop and cafe and its a perfect place to visit. 
  • Another of my 'always go to' when I'm here. A great Australian history tour. One of my favs is 'Ned's head' the death mask of our Ned Kelly after his hanging. 
  • Not very big by comparison to other galleries, but so many amazing portraits. Definately a place to visit. 
Google
  • As an UBER driver who moves visitors around our nation's capital on a daily basis, I always recommend the Portrait Gallery as a "must see". You don't have to spend the day on your feet and the displays are always of immense interest. The staff are always helpful and the gallery rearrange the exhibits regularly so it's always interesting no matter how many times you visit.
  • One of my favorite places for art, the National Gallery is beautiful and regularly updates their exhibitions, from the cultural history of nudes to death masks. On the weekends there are always free activities, from drop in drawings to live music (mostly classical). My absolute joy each visit is the Women in Focus gallery, which has an impressive dedication to women artists and subjects, to address women's absence from other historical spaces. This is an absolutely magical place to visit.
  • Not sure if the portraits are organized by theme, but definitely not by medium. The subjects seem a lot more important than the artists.
  • A great modern exhibition building with lots of space and interesting structures. This is more suited to adults rather than a family outing. As you wonder through the hallways you can learn about the history and stories behind the portraits. The gallery also has free undercover parking on weekends and public holidays.
  • Amazing being able to see the portraits of the most influential Australians... Both indigenous and otherwise. Very enjoyable gallery. Highly recommended to Australians and foreigners, as each portrait contains an explanation of the subject's significance.