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Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts

a hidden gem offering an insight into early colonial life in Tasmania

About
The Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts is frequently described as a hidden gem. It is well worth seeking out as it offers visitors an insight into early colonial life in Tasmania. It can be found on the ground floor of the State Library of Tasmania, now called LINC Tasmania at 91 Murray Street Hobart. It is an extraordinary collection of rare books, colonial works of art, eighteenth and early nineteenth century furniture, silver, glass, fine china and objets d’art. 

This small museum gives a glimpse into the lifestyle of an educated and cultured family of nineteenth century Tasmania. There is a permanent display of period rooms that recall the elegance of the Georgian era with mahogany and walnut furniture, display cabinets of Georgian silver and glass and fine English, French and Chinese porcelain. The oil paintings in the colonial gallery give an impression of life on the high seas and the early landscapes of Van Diemen’s Land. There is an exciting program of changing exhibitions in the main gallery that feature a combination of objects and works from the collection with contemporary art.

The collection is a rare and extraordinarily generous example of private philanthropy representing tastes and values which in both England and Australia were affordable by relatively few in the eighteenth, nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The library and art collection are now highly valued and used by researchers interested in early colonial art and culture. Joseph and Mary Allport settled in Van Diemen’s Land in 1831. They and their descendants played an important role in the artistic, cultural and social development of the colony and the state of Tasmania. Their great-grandson Henry Allport, the last male descendant, bequeathed the collection to the people of Tasmania in 1965 as a memorial to the Allport family.

Entry is free, with cards, prints and books related to the collection for sale at the reception desk of the museum.

What’s on

Past events

FH-a-family-heirloom_the-moonstone-necklace-of-iris-lyne-2
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FAMILY HEIRLOOM by Katy Woodroffe

Exhibitions

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91 Murray Street, Hobart

Award winning contemporary artist Katy Woodroffe reflects on her own past in this striking, personal exhibition
Detail from Extended view - Recherche Bay
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The Naturalist’s Footsteps

Exhibitions

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91 Murray Street, Hobart

Nicola Dickson re-traces Labillardière's steps from the 1790's D'Entrecasteaux expedition.
Revference
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Revference [sic]

Exhibitions

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91 Murray Street, Hobart

A new and wonderful interpretation of history told in objects.
Seeking Solace
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Stories in Ink

Heritage

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91 Murray Street, Hobart

John Scot’s diary 1836-1847, King Island, Tasmania
Posy of Native Flowers
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Unhoused

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91 Murray Street, Hobart

Encounters with the hidden in the Allport
Maatsuyker island-Guiding light
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Guiding Light, Maatsuyker Island

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Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts, 91 Murray Street

A collaboration between art and heritage.
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Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts

91 Murray Street, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia

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