Showcasing the pre-eminent art collection in Western Australia

Multi-million dollar fund for contemporary art reaches its goal

25 Aug 2011

The TomorrowFund, launched in 2008 to transform the State Art Collection through the acquisition of works of contemporary art, has reached its designated target, receiving pledges totalling $25million.

Culture and the Arts Minister John Day said the Art Gallery of Western Australia would now receive a promised $5million of State Government funding.

“In 2008, the State Government contributed $10million to the TomorrowFund, and pledged a further $5million if the gallery could raise $10million of its own,” Mr Day said.

“I’m very pleased to congratulate the gallery on achieving this target with the receipt of a very generous donation, valued at more than $3million, from Andrew and Nicola Forrest.

“It is the last of many major pledges from Western Australia’s leading companies and community figures, including the initial $1million pledges from BHP Billiton; National Australia Bank; Wesfarmers; and Woodside.

“These donations and the generous gifts from many individual West Australians have ensured the success of the acquisition project.

“The success of the TomorrowFund reflects an outstanding response from WA’s corporate and private sector to the Art Gallery of Western Australia’s challenge to create an arts legacy for future generations of Western Australia.”

The Minister said that, in the past 18 months, TomorrowFund had enabled the gallery to acquire 148 works of contemporary art, including 95 works by Western Australian artists; 49 works by Australian artists and four works by international artists. These included works by recognised artists such as Dale Frank; Fiona Foley; Brendan van Hek (recently awarded the inaugural Stringer Award); Sally Gabori; and Jesper Just.

“One of the first works ever acquired by the Art Gallery of Western Australia was Frederick McCubbin’s Down on His Luck,” he said.

“At the time, this was considered a bold move for the gallery, as McCubbin was a relatively new contemporary artist but today the painting is recognised as an Australian masterpiece.

“The TomorrowFund’s aim was to ensure the gallery remains in a position to purchase today’s McCubbins.

“Reaching this fund raising target of $10million as part of the total $25million fund is a significant step towards securing the future of the State Art Collection.”