Since its inception in 1904, the Broken Hill Regional Art Gallery (BHRAG) has acquired, through donation or purchase, a collection of national importance.
The Gallery manages more than 2,000 colonial, modern and contemporary Australian artworks, predominantly paintings and works on paper, by artists including Rick Amor, Badger Bates, Charles Blackman, Arthur Boyd, Noel Counihan, Liz Cuming, George Gittoes, Barbara Hanrahan, Gordon Hookey, Emily Kame Kngwarreye, Mandy Martin, Clifton Pugh, Lloyd Rees, Garry Shead, Tim Storrier, and Clifford Possum Tjapaltjarri.
The Gallery also possesses an authoritative collection of artworks narrating the history of Broken Hill. This includes works by J.C. Goodhart, Sam Byrne, Robert Emerson Curtis, May Harding, Hoppy Hopgood and Pro Hart.
Following the bequest from Mr George McCulloch, co-founder of Broken Hill Proprietary Limited (BHP), and his widow Mrs J. Coutts Michie OBE in 1904, the collection was strengthened in 1913 with the donation of Vae Victis, the Sack of Morocco by the Almohades (1890) by Arthur Hacker RA, a monumental painting produced at the Royal Academy in London.
From these early donations, the collection continued to grow. A key figure in the history of the development of BHRAG's collection was F.E.B. Rost. Mr Rost moved his family to Broken Hill around early 1940 to take up the position of Principal at the Technical College. Together with the President of The Zinc Corporation, W.S. Robinson, he acquired the works of significant Australian artists including Arthur Streeton, Rupert Bunny, George Lambert, Hans Heysen, William Blamire Young, Norman Lindsay, Lloyd Rees and George Lawrence. In October 1950, Rost was appointed the first Director of the Gallery in recognition of his commitment to the arts and service to the community.
Today the collection is further strengthened through the generous donation of artworks, as well as through the Gallery’s acquisitive award, The Pro Hart Outback Art Prize. Highlights of the collection are on permanent display in the upstairs gallery and smaller exhibitions are on display periodically.
Completed in 2021, the Gallery undertook a two-year project to digitise the full permanent collection at the Broken Hill Regional Art Gallery and at the Albert Kersten Mining and Minerals Museum. This project was funded by Create NSW via the NSW Government Regional Cultural Fund.
Key Collection Areas