I am always looking out for new experiences, wherever I may find myself.
Published April 3rd 2015
The Grace Cossington Smith Gallery is part of Abbotsleigh School for Girls, but the public is welcome to take a look inside (for free). It can be found at the senior school, off the Pacific Highway, while the junior school is located down Woonoona Avenue, over the other side of the highway.
Exhibitions at the gallery are always changing and usually last about a month. They may be by an artist in residence, have been borrowed from another gallery (2015 will see works from the Macquarie University and Orange Regional Gallery on display), or come from local artists, travelling exhibitions or other sources.
There are some exhibitions however which you can count on happening every year. For a few weeks in August and September, art by the students of the school is displayed for Abbotsleigh Art Month. At the end of the year, there's also an exhibition of the finalists of the Grace Cossington Smith art award, a national competition for two dimensional art that offers a $15,000 prize.
Groups of either students or adults can get an introduction or tour of any exhibitions if booked in advance. The gallery closes over summer, from mid-December to mid-January, but otherwise can be visited from Monday to Sunday (it's also closed on public holidays).
The Grace Cossington Smith Gallery is quite new, having only opened in 2013, however its building is a lot older. The space used on the bottom floor of Vindin House, a former boarding house built in 1905 and named after Walter Mullins Vindin, Abbotsleigh's first Chairman of Council (the second floor of the building is for Year 12). It's named after artist Grace Cossington Smith, who attended Abbotsleigh between 1908 and 1910.
There is a car park next to the gallery, however most of the spaces in it are reserved for various employees of the school, so parking is actually limited. Visitors should also be aware that the car park, the school and the roads surrounding Abbotsleigh can all only be accessed if you're in the Pacific Highway lanes approaching from the south/east.
This gallery is within walking distance from Wahroonga train station.