S.H. Ervin Gallery

COVID-19 UPDATE: Following NSW Government stay at home orders, S.H. Ervin Gallery will be closed until further notice.

The S.H. Ervin Gallery is open Tuesdays to Sundays, 11am – 5pm, with pre-booked tickets.

The history of S.H Ervin Gallery

History of S.HA gallery dedicated to Australian art situated on Observatory Hill in The Rocks in Sydney. Designed as classrooms in 1856 by Henry Robertson, it now features seven exhibitions a year. Discover what is currently on display. The Gallery’s exhibition program is designed to explore the richness and diversity of Australian art, both historical and contemporary, and present it in new contexts. The Gallery is renowned for encouraging research and promoting scholarly appraisal of artists from all periods of Australian art history. In addition, the S.H. Ervin Gallery has developed an excellent name for presenting important exhibitions and programs that recognise the valuable contribution made by Australian women artists.

The Gallery building dates from 1856, when it was designed by Henry Robertson as additional classroom accommodation for the expanding Fort Street School (which later became Fort Street Girl’s School in 1916). The school operated on the site until the early 1970s. Around this time, philanthropist and collector, Samuel Henry Ervin offered a bequest for the establishment of a public art gallery committed to the display of Australian art. The National Trust secured the lease of the former Fort Street Girls’ School buildings from the NSW Department of Public Works. Following the restoration of the buildings, the S.H. Ervin Gallery was officially opened in May 1978, by NSW Premier Neville Wran, with an exhibition of works by Conrad Martens.

What will you see when you visit

The S.H. Ervin Gallery hosts seven exhibitions each year, including travelling exhibitions, which focus on the work of Australian artists. The Gallery has presented major survey exhibitions of artists including Clarice BeckettAlbert TuckerViolet TeagueKathleen O’ConnorMargo LewersJean BelletteWilliam Robinson and John Coburn. The S.H. Ervin Gallery also hosts popular annual shows including the Salon des Refusés: The alternative Archibald and Wynne Prize, and the Portia Geach Memorial Award for women artists.

How to book your tickets

We are thrilled to welcome the community back to the S.H. Ervin Gallery following the COVID-19 shut down, however, please note you must purchase a ticket in advance and timed entry applies, unless you are redeeming a Service NSW $25 Dine and Discover voucher.

You are welcome to use the Dine & Discover voucher at this National Trust Property however we cannot process the voucher with your online ticket purchase at this time. Please present your voucher (printed or digitally on a device of your choice) when you arrive and we will discount your ticket on entry.

Pre-purchase your timed ticket to visit the S.H. Ervin Gallery 

Please read Terms & Conditions of Entry in advance.

How to keep up to date with what’s on 

Please follow us on Facebook, subscribe to our eNews or monitor our online News posts for updates. We thank you in advance for your understanding that we are doing our bit to keep the community safe.

Location Details

S.H. Ervin Gallery


National Trust S.H. Ervin Gallery, Watson Road, Millers Point (The Rocks)


Open Tuesday – Sunday, 11am – 5pm, last entry 4pm.


Mondays & Public Holidays.

(02) 9258 0173
Entry Fees:

$12.00 - General
*$10.00 – Seniors and Concessions
$4.00 – National Trust Members
(children under 12 free)
Selected exhibitions may incur special prices
(* Concession applies for full-time students, seniors, and pensioners)
Please note: To ensure we can manage timed entry and safe physical distancing, we are asking visitors to pre-purchase tickets via Eventbrite. Booking fees will apply.

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