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The Johnston Collection July2020-82


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The Johnston Collection has expanded into its third property in East Melbourne with the opening of The Johnston Collection Gallery, a showcase for private collections, both contemporary and historical, as well as a venue for lectures and seminars.

When William Johnston died in 1986 the terms of his will paved the way for the establishment of the Johnston Collection Museum in his former residence in East Melbourne. Monies raised from the sale of other properties belonging to William Johnston, was the basis of an endowment to support the operations of this unique fine and decorative arts museum.
Boasting a collection of French and English furniture, ceramics, paintings and decorative arts, particularly rich in the Georgian and Regency periods, the Johnston Collection has thrilled visitors for many years.

With the Trust's recent expansion into its third property, visitors can also experience the Johnston Collection Gallery, a showcase for private collections as well as a venue for lectures and seminars.
The inaugural exhibition, ‘Private Collections - Intriguing Connections’ features The Robert Allison Collection of Contemporary Art. The show makes visual and thought-provoking links to Mr Johnston's historic collection. Allison, a Sydney figurative art collector was inspired by James Agapitos OAM, the great Australian surrealist collector.

Director of the Johnston Collection, Nina Stanton, said, ‘This new development is a bold move, but one we believe fits snugly into our educational philosophy. Comparison of Mr Allison's collection with that of Mr Johnston's will provoke discussion and show visitors new ways of seeing, interpreting and enjoying both contemporary and historical works. Our aim is to give our visitors a set of responsive tools to take with them on a visit to a more formal art gallery. We believe the Johnston Collection is a stepping stone on the path to cultural maturity. ‘

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