The changing face of Victoria

Visit a remarkable free exhibition that tells the stories of the people, places and events that have shaped Victoria.

01 January 201731 December 2017
Bookings not required. Tel 03 8664 7099 for more information.
LocationDome Galleries, Level 5
Accessibility Has wheelchair access

Discover the people, places and events that have shaped Victoria. See Ned Kelly's armour; encounter explorers and early settlers; gain insights into life on the goldfields; and explore aspects of daily life in Victoria in the 20th and 21st centuries.

New exhibits

More than 80 new items from across our collections are now on display in our Changing face of Victoria exhibition. Highlights include:

  • The premier and the pen, a display of caricatures of Victorian premiers by some of Australia's finest political cartoonists: Geoff Hook, Peter Nicholson, John Spooner, Ron Tandberg and Les Tanner – including the original artwork for a cartoon that so incensed Frank Packer (publisher of the Bulletin) that he ordered the whole edition pulped.
  • New items in the permanent Ned Kelly display, including an interactive piece which plays Ned Kelly-themed albums from the Library's audio collection
  • a showcase on the history of calisthenics, with a focus on materials from the Vera E Hopton archives
  • a display about two influential Indigenous community leaders, Maggie and Ernest Mobourne, who challenged government policy in the early 1900s.

WWI centenary display

This dedicated area of the exhibition focuses on Gallipoli and the evacuation of the peninsula. See moving letters, diaries and photographs that reveal the daily life of soldiers on the battlefront, and understand the roles of writing and censorship in the war.

Permanent exhibition

Journey through Victoria’s past as you sift through photographs, personal accounts and artefacts from first settlement to today. Meet historic characters from infamous bushranger Ned Kelly to ill-fated explorers Burke and Wills, and learn about the everyday lives of generations of Victorians. New items and stories are added to this exhibition twice yearly, revealing different aspects of the Library's historic collection.

Opening hours

This free exhibition is open 10am–6pm daily except Thursdays, when it is open until 9pm.