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Best gallery spaces in Melbourne to exhibit art for free

Meld Magazine

Fri Mar 13 2015


ARE you a budding artist looking to showcase your work to the world? Gabriella Affrin lists the top six places in Melbourne where you can get your work exhibited for free!


For many young creative artists, showing their work to the public can be the hardest part of the project. It’s one thing to overcome the fear of being criticised over your work but finding an exhibition space within a low budget can be quite frustrating.

Fortunately, there are some great spaces around Melbourne for artists to properly exhibit their work, and all for free!

All you need to do in order to be eligible for exhibition is to send a proposal that match the requirements of the space you wish to show your work in.

Below you’ll find a list of some of the best places around Melbourne where you can get eyes on your creative projects.

Loop Bar’s LoopHole


LoopHole (pictured in far left) is a cabinet space for artists to show their off of at Loop Bar. Image supplied.

Loop Bar is one of the most popular destinations for people to share their work. Various art, films and performances by al types of artists have been presented here and yours could be too!

LoopHole, especially made by Loop Bar for emerging artists who want to showcase their artworks, consists of a cabinet space with 138 cm height, 65 cm width and 33 cm depth. The space is backlit, can be divided into five sections and is particularly accommodating to those with a passion for sculpturing. It can also support projector screens and audio-visual equipment.

Previous works to have been exhibited at LoopHole include “Watermelatonin” by Nellie Rogerson, “Kulers” by Kiri-Brito Meumann and sculptural works by Danny Frommer.

To participate, you need to submit a proposal that includes the description of your exhibition, a short artist history and up to six images of your works. You can do so by checking out their official website.

Murray’s Duggan Street Gallery

Australian artist, Alex Stalling, has an amazingly generous opportunity for emerging artists to get their work exhibited for a total of six weeks at the Murray’s Duggan Street Gallery throughout 2015.

Fortunate artists will have their work shown behind a window on a busy street but need to grab people’s attention without being awfully controversial. Additionally, artists who have their works exhibited at the gallery will need to have works that transcend all age groups in order to reach a wider encompassing crowd.

What’s more, Murray’s Duggan Street Gallery wants successful artists to be able to create art pieces that are viewable from different angles including from behind.

More details about the space and the proposal can be found at the gallery’s official website.

Rooftop Art Space

Enjoy a movie with a backdrop of Melbourne's city skyline on the Rooftop Cinema. Photo: Martina Gemmola

Sure, you might know it as one of Melbourne’s coolest cinemas and bars, but Rooftop also has a space for artists too! Photo: Martina Gemmola

Another iconic Melbourne hangout spot is the Rooftop Bar, a popular destination for those looking for a night out on the town.

What you might not know is that there also nine custom-made boxes containing various interesting artworks from young artists around Melbourne.

Applications to have your art exhibited in these boxes at Rooftop’s Art Space are open all year round. Successfully exhibited artists at Rooftop include Anna Parry, Lucy James, Lenna Abbas and Dyana Gray.

If you want to join that list of names, get in touch with the folks behind Rooftop’s Art Space through e-mail or via their official Facebook page.

Mailbox Art Space

Photo: Danielle Hakim

Unique mailbox storage showcases your art! Photo: Danielle Hakim

Featuring 19 small antique boxes, Mailbox Art Space is another venue for artists who want a unique way to showcase their works.

To be successful in acquiring exhibition space here, works will need to be attention-grabbing and steer clear of arousing controversy.

Current and previous exhibitions that the Mailbox Art Space has displayed include “In Space No One Can Hear You Collect Rocks” by Rohan Wealleans, “Alphabet Soup” by Simon Mee and ‘Years Before Me’ by Lucinda Barnett.

If you feel that the space matches your personality and style perfectly, drop your application at the official website!

Screen Space

Kit Wise, Arcadia, 3-channel HD video. Installation View, Screen Space, 2013. Image courtesy the Artist and Sarah Scout Gallery, Melbourne. Photo: Kyle Weise.

Kit Wise, Arcadia, 3-channel HD video. Installation View, Screen Space, 2013. Image courtesy the Artist and Sarah Scout Gallery, Melbourne. Photo: Kyle Weise.

Just like its name, Screen Space is a gallery that focuses on art that utilises screen-based technology.

Artists with a vested interest in the moving image ought to consider getting their work exhibited here and join the likes of Michael Vale, Kit Wise and Dawn Roe who’ve had their screen art displayed here.

You can also volunteer to help the folks behind Screen Space run the space and pick up some useful, behind-the-curtain experience with them.

Join Screen Space’s mailing list and stay up to date on the next call out for proposals to have your work exhibited. More information about Screen Space can be accessed through their official website.

Testing Grounds

Image courtesy of Testing Grounds.

Develop your own work from scratch right here! Image courtesy of Testing Grounds.

Different from other galleries, Testing Grounds not only offers a space to exhibit your work, but also develop it from a scratch.

You could join their artist-in-residence program and get wild with your creativity, or simply showcase your works in any form. However before submitting your work, it is important to remember that Testing Ground is a place where new ideas are experimented, tested and shared.

Some of the past works include ‘The View – America” by Kate Russell, “The Egg of The Snake” by Vassilis Papageorgiou and “I AM A WOMAN TOO” by Soledad Herrera.

To get involved, fill out their application form located on their official website.