Ian Potter Museum of Art

The Ian Potter Museum of Art_Cultural Rubble Illumination, Peter Casamento

The Ian Potter Museum of Art engages with creativity and encourages learning through art.

Founded in 1972, the Ian Potter Museum of Art is the University of Melbourne’s art museum. Housed in an award-winning building opened in 1998, the Potter is the largest university-based art museum in Australia and a national leader in the field. The Potter manages the University Art Collection, a rich resource of art and artifacts spanning neolithic to contemporary.  We are a cultural and educational facility, serving both the campus community and the general public.

Embracing research, discovery and debate, the Potter exhibits art from antiquity to the present. We display art from the University Art Collection, as well as from public and private collections from around Australia and the world. Working with living artists, we participate directly in the development of contemporary art. Public programs, publications, and social media encourage engagement, learning and the exchange of ideas.

The Potter is committed to extensive participation in the University’s interdisciplinary degree structure. Our goal is to make art central to teaching and learning, by enhancing art collection access and contributing to curriculum development across all faculties.

The Potter unites art with the activities and environment of the University of Melbourne campus. We display the University Art Collection around the campus and form academic partnerships linking art with the curriculum. Through our engagement with the arts community we contribute directly to the cultural life of Victoria.

Vision: Art provokes pleasure and reflection, inquiry and debate. Engaging with art encourages learning and fosters knowledge. As a laboratory for art and ideas, the Potter  contributes directly to the University of Melbourne’s research and teaching activities, to enrich the student experience, and to enhance the cultural life of the campus and the general community.

Mission: To collect, preserve, display, interpret and engage with contemporary and historical works of art thereby advancing appreciation of Australia’s cultural heritage on a local, national and international level, and supporting the University of Melbourne as a leading teaching and research institution.

Permanent Collection

The Ian Potter Museum of Art houses the University of Melbourne Art Collection. The collection is rich and varied and has major holdings of Australian art in all media from the early nineteenth century to the present day, as well as holdings of European art, International indigenous art and classics and archaeology. Numbering over 14,000 works, these diverse holdings form the largest university art collection in Australia.

Online collection
getting to the gallery

Located at the University of Melbourne, the Gallery is situated on Swanston Street between Faraday and Elgin streets in Parkville.


The Ian Potter Museum of Art welcomes visitors with disabilities, although there are access limitations. Staff can provide assistance if notified in advance.

cafe & gallery shop

The Potter Cafe
Monday - Friday:  7am - 6pm
Saturday - Sunday: 8am - 5.30pm
Trading hours may vary during semester breaks.

North-east corner of the Ian Potter Museum of Art, facing Swanston Street.  
For further information about catering and other services please visit: Blueprint Catering

Gallery Shop
In collaboration with the Co-op Bookshop, University of Melbourne, the Potter offers a wide range of quality art books, including our own publications. To purchase Potter publications online click here.

cultural commons

The Ian Potter Museum of Art is part of the Museums & Collections department at University of Melbourne, forming connections with other collections, galleries and museums at the university as part of the Cultural Commons




Ian potter museum of art
old quad

Cover image: John Gollings, The Ian Potter Museum of Art.
Above image: Peter Casamento, Cultural Rubble Illumination.

Ian Potter Museum of Art
The University of Melbourne
Located on Swanston Street between Faraday and Elgin streets
Parkville VIC 3010
T: 03 8344 5148
E: potter-info@unimelb.edu.au 
W: art-museum.unimelb.edu.au

Opening Hours
Tuesday - Friday: 10am - 5pm 
Saturday and Sunday: 12 noon - 5pm 
Closed Monday
Entry is Free

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The Public Galleries Association of Victoria (PGAV) acknowledges the Wurundjeri Woi-Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation as the Traditional Owners of the lands where our office is located, and all Traditional Owners of country throughout Victoria and Australia. We recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples enduring traditions and continuing creative cultures. We pay our respect to Elders past, present and emerging.

We are an LGBTQIA+ friendly organisation and celebrate cultural diversity.