The Museum welcomes diverse artistic programs that contribute to a broad understanding of Chinese Australian and Chinese art and culture – from aesthetics to social, and historical exhibitions to contemporary programs.

We provide two unique spaces, Level One Gallery and Level Two Contemporary Art Space. These spaces are available for hire by curators, group artists and individuals working in painting, sculpture, photograph, fashion, design, installation, video, and sound and dance.

Exhibition projects are selected depending on the availability of space and duration of the hire. In general, we are looking at space availability for the coming year.

The museum staff work closely with the selected curators and artists in developing and promoting their exhibition projects. We encourage both emerging and established art professionals to apply and propose for group or solo exhibitions.

Before submitting the proposals, please read the detailed Q&A and fill in the Expression of Interest form.


Bringing Meaning: Landscape Paintings by Zhou Xiaoping 另一种呈现:周小平的绘画艺术

25 August 2017 - 6 March 2018

Level One Gallery

The Chinese Museum is delighted to welcome back artist Zhou Xiaoping for the exhibition, Bringing Meaning:  Landscape Paintings by Zhou Xiaoping.  It has been fifteen years since he first exhibited at the museum.  He exhibited on three previous occasions in two solo exhibitions (1993, 2002) and a group show (1996).

Over this period, Zhou has become an important figure in contemporary art in Australia and China.  He has had 40 solo exhibitionsnumerous art residencies, and two books have been published in China on his work.  In 2011, he was the subject of a documentary film called Ochre and Ink about his experience as a Chinese artist in Aboriginal Australia.  Over his career, he has established enduring friendships with members of the Aboriginal community including the late Jimmy Pike. In 1999, Zhou and Pike held a joint exhibition in Beijing at the National Gallery of China.

Chinese Australian and Chinese artists are known and celebrated in Australia and around the world. Zhou Xiaoping's career and artwork offer a unique viewpoint, which combines his classical Chinese skills in brush stroke painting with Australian Aboriginal influences that merge immigrant and indigenous identities into a seamless whole.



自周先生第一次在澳华历史博物馆展出作品后,如今他已成为中澳当代艺术领域的重要人物。陆续举办了40场个人画展,参与无数次艺术活动,并且在中国出版了两本书籍。2011年,一部以周小平先生为主角的纪录片电影《赭石与墨水(Ochre and Ink)》问世,讲述了他作为一名中国画家,在澳大利亚原住民地区进行艺术创作的历程。


About the artist

Zhou Xiaoping is a Melbourne-based artist, born and educated in China. Since 1988, he has been actively engaged with Aboriginal communities in Arnhem Land and the Kimberley. 


Learn more about him.

Chinese Museum gratefully acknowledges the generous support of:

The Unruly Art of Leo Tien


30 Nov 2016 — 19 Mar 2017

A deceptively simple painting, titled Happy New Year Family, shows members of a Chinese family staring directly out of the frame — but upon closer inspection, the portrait is really an indictment of racist attitudes. On the left side of the canvas, there is a small bleeding heart and a list of racist names: “Japs, reffos, wops and woks”; and on the right side, “Pommies, Yankees, Irish and Jews.”  The picture on the surface is tranquil and pleasant but the prejudice either experienced or witnessed was painful enough to express in the painting.  It’s New Year, a time of fresh beginnings, but the pain of racism remains.

Such is the complex nature of Leo Tien’s art: a truly ‘unruly’ painter, Tien was not concerned with technical perfection but nonetheless powerful, poetic, comic and inventive.

Born and raised in China as a Catholic before WWII, Leo Tien became a priest and religious scholar and eventually moved to Australia.  In his late forties, he would leave the priesthood but not the church.  In his new life as a Chinese Australian immigrant, he moved to Melbourne’s Dandenong, where he married, lived and worked for fifteen years until he retired.

Through the deep power of his imagination, Tien was able to meld all these distinct identities into one creative voice in his painting.  His strength as an artist lies not in technical prowess, but the powerful and unique imagery that reflects his deepest feelings about life as a Chinese Australian immigrant and his personal spiritual exploration.

Modern Folk Art: Peasant Paintings by Shao Qihua



7 Nov – 21 Dec (Part 1) | 9 Jan – 19 Feb (Part 2)

Jinshan Peasant Paintings, also known as “Farmer Painting”, began to attract international attention in the 1970s after artist Wu Tongzhang taught painting techniques to farmers in Jinshan – a district of Shanghai well-known for its agricultural products.

Peasant paintings have a unique cultural significance due to the status of its painters: older female farmers in rural China who did not receive a ‘formal’ art education, but were otherwise skilled in folk arts that had been passed down for generations including paper cutting, paper folding, embroidery, and weaving.

These modern folk artists depict an idealised rural life, and while their paintings appear almost childlike in style, this is deceptive. In fact, their strong graphic design, bold colour combinations and imaginative ideas are simple but sophisticated, justifying their nickname of ‘Chinese Picassos’.

Today Jinshan Peasant Painting has become a full-time occupation for many farmers and their work is being exhibited internationally. Despite the wide appeal of the artwork and their international recognition, some critics still view the paintings’ consistent theme of happiness as neither ‘real’ nor ‘serious’ art.


About the artist

All the artworks in this exhibition were painted by Shao Qihua. Shao was born in 1965 and is a famous Jinshan folk artist whose works have been exhibited internationally. She has won many awards and in 2006, was named Jinshan Peasant Painting Artist by the People’s Government of Jinshan District, Shanghai.

 Artworks available for sale – all proceeds benefit the Chinese Museum

Artworks are available to purchase for $200 (including GST) from curatorial staff from Wednesday to Friday at the museum. Payments can be made by card or cash. After the conclusion of the first part of the Modern Folk Art exhibition, artworks can be picked up on 21 and 22 Dec. If you have any questions, please contact the curatorial staff or call 61-410- 810-782 for further information.


Unbounded Space [當代●無界]


15 – 20 Nov

Hailing from Shanghai’s M50 contemporary art district, artist Wang Run-Yue and curator He Fei-Yue transform the abstract language of the personal into abstract objects that are tangible.

Using a combination of acrylic paint and mixed media, Wang reconstructs familiar landscape scenes into something pertaining to his own artistic sensibility. Through conflicting colours and a highly textural aesthetic, audiences not only gain insight into the artist’s own changing emotional state during the creative process, but also a new and personal visual experience.

The dialogue between the Wang and He aims to disrupt the relationship between the public and the personal, the ‘person’ and the ‘object’. Here, artist and audience, audience and gallery, artist and gallery, all co-exist with another as part of the exhibition.

The exhibition opening night will be held on Monday 14th November at 6pm.

About the Artist
Wang Run-Yue was born in late 1980s. He graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts, Shanghai Normal University, majoring in oil painting. In 2005 and 2009, Wang’s work
Other People’s World and Hope were selected in Shanghai Youth Art Exhibition. In his current creative works, he has been focusing on combining ceramic glaze, glass paint and resin with his oil painting practice. Wang currently lives and works in Shanghai.