Fortitude Valley:
Art trail

18 JANUARY 2023

Fortitude Valley in Brisbane’s inner-city is best explored by foot. Perfect for a pre-dinner stroll or weekend daytrip, the Valley precinct is brimming with independent retailers and trendy restaurants and bars. It’s also home to some of Brisbane’s best galleries and stockrooms, which can be enjoyed together in this curated art trail.

Getting there 

If you’re driving in, park around the Brunswick St end of Wickham St and if you’re catching the train in, exit onto Brunswick St. There are several buses that’ll get you into the Valley. Check out TransLink for public transport help. 

Explore the Fortitude Valley/New Farm art trail

Once you’re in the Valley, orient yourself at the top of the Brunswick Street Mall, then take a short stroll up Brunswick St towards New Farm. On the right, you’ll pass by Festival House – home to a number of Brisbane’s leading arts organisations including Brisbane Festival, QMF and Brisbane Writers Festival.

Continue to the next block and you’ll find the Judith Wright Arts Centre, home of the Institute of Modern Art. The IMA presents an ambitious program of free exhibitions and events by Australian and international artists. It’s the oldest contemporary art organisation of its kind in Australia and encourages research and experimentation, offering artists a platform to share their work with a wide range of audiences. 

Meander up Brunswick St towards the river and you’ll chance upon the esteemed Jan Murphy Gallery. Established in 1995, Jan Murphy Gallery is regarded as one of Brisbane’s leading galleries, dedicated to the exhibition and sale of contemporary art of the highest calibre. With three exhibition spaces showcasing a regularly changing selection of local and interstate Australian art by established and emerging artists, you’ll find yourself coming back time and time again.

Another must-see in the Fortitude Valley gallery precinct is Philip Bacon Galleries, Brisbane’s leading commercial gallery. Located a stone’s throw from Jan Murphy Gallery at 2 Arthur St, Philip Bacon Galleries has played a pivotal role in the thriving Brisbane art scene for almost 50 years. Renowned for its extensive collection of the country’s most collectable contemporary artists, expect to find work by the modern masters including Charles Blackman, Cressida Campbell, William Robinson, Jude Rae and Michael Zavros.

Continue down Arthur St a short while and you’ll arrive at Mitchell Fine Art, where you’ll find a selection of Australia’s leading First Nations and contemporary artists in a converted industrial space. Advocating that “art is for everyone”, Mitchell Fine Arts presents an annual calendar of solo and group exhibitions and holds regular special events, including exhibition openings and artist talks.

Loop back to Brunswick St and head towards the river, where you’ll find Edwina Corlette Gallery, an intimate gallery showcasing a select group of contemporary artists from Australia and the Asia Pacific. Here you’ll find a range of mediums on display, including painting, printmaking, photography, sculpture, installation and digital art, plus a special events program including artist talks.

Finish your trail with a bite at the nearby James St, where you’ll find the city’s largest gathering of top restaurants in one location.