the art gallery of new south wales has announced that the NSW government has committed significant capital to fund its ambitious expansion plans. in 2015, japanese firm SANAA was selected ahead of other established names — including david chipperfield, herzog & de meuron, and renzo piano — to extend the australian institution as part of the ‘sydney modern project’. just over two years later, the project is nearly fully financed with a supplementary capital campaign to be launched later in 2017.


all images and videos © art gallery of NSW / SANAA

 

 

the NSW government has pledged $244 million AUD ($186m USD) to support the expansion, while the remainder of the funds will be raised through philanthropic support. ‘this is a remarkable day for the gallery and the australian arts community,’ said art gallery of NSW director dr. michael brand. ‘our expanded gallery will deliver an iconic building that combines art, architecture, and landscape in an extraordinary way, and in one of the most breathtaking locations in the world.’

 

 

in progress images of the sydney modern project expansion

 

 

the SANAA-designed expansion will provide significantly increased floor area, allowing more of the gallery’s $1.3 billion AUD collection to be displayed. specifically, aboriginal and torres strait islander art will take prominent positions in the expanded venue. the sydney modern project is expected to attract two million visitors each year, and will help bring more major international art exhibitions to new south wales.


the site’s existing oil tanks will become a new venue for contemporary art

 

 

‘this decision by the NSW government is to be applauded and its merit, in my opinion, will be seen and enjoyed by generations to come,’ says david gonski, art gallery of NSW president of the board. over the next 25 years, it is anticipated that the revamped institution will deliver a wider economic benefit to the NSW economy of over $1 billion AUD, while it is also hoped that the plans will lead to the creation of up to 242 full-time jobs in the state.


collectively the new and existing buildings will form part of an expanded cultural campus

 

 

collectively the new and existing buildings will create an expanded arts campus that will connect the gallery with the city’s harbor, the royal botanic gardens, sydney opera house, the state library of NSW, the CBD and woolloomooloo. in addition, a new outdoor plaza will remain open to the public 24 hours a day.

 

 

historical and in progress images of the disused former world war II oil tanks

 

 

over the past two years, SANAA has continued to evolve the design concept, which will be submitted for planning approval in the coming months. major construction of the project will get underway in 2019 with the expansion due set completion in 2021 — in time for the gallery’s 150th anniversary.

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