Director of Geelong Gallery announces retirement

Art Announcement from Australia. Published by Geelong Gallery on Sunday 09 August 2015.

Director of Geelong Gallery announces retirement image

Geelong Gallery Director, Geoffrey Edwards, today announced his retirement from this role, with effect from the end of April 2016, to pursue his lecturing, writing and advisory work.

Having led the Geelong Gallery for the past 15 years, Geoffrey Edwards oversaw the national campaign to acquire from celebrity vendor, Andrew Lloyd Webber, the great colonial masterpiece, View of Geelong (1856) by Eugene von Guérard. At the time of its acquisition in 2006 for close to $4 million, the work held the national record as the most expensive Australian painting ever purchased for a public institution. He was also responsible for the more recent acquisition of Arthur Streeton’s Ocean blue, Lorne (1921) and, during his time as Director, secured some $7 million in total of new acquisitions of both historical and contemporary art which, in particular, included a strategic enhancement of the Gallery’s holdings of images of Geelong and the wider region. He also initiated award-winning publications and education programs, and a comprehensive upgrade of the Gallery’s current building.

Gallery President, Terry Wills Cooke, on behalf of the Board expressed its gratitude for the way in which Geoffrey Edwards has conducted the affairs of the Gallery over these past 15 years, which have seen many highlights, not the least of which has been his part in setting a clear course for the much needed expansion of the Gallery.

’Both the Board and the staff have valued his dedication, extensive knowledge, erudite speeches, and strong leadership during his time as Director and wish him well in his future career as a major figure in the Australian arts scene,’ Mr Wills Cooke said.

Geoffrey Edwards’ last major project at Geelong Gallery will be a ticketed exhibition of national significance, Land of the Golden Fleece—Arthur Streeton in the Western District.

Prior to his appointment at Geelong, Geoffrey Edwards held senior curatorial positions at the National Gallery of Victoria where he was in charge of collections including International and Australian sculpture.

Recruitment for Geoffrey Edwards’ successor will commence in late-2015.