'Shot' – 400 photos from the archives from NSW State Library

Visit the new underground photography gallery and follow the fascinating journey of the photographic image in Australia. 

Shot delves into the Library’s extraordinary collection of two million images and delivers a visual feast of 400 captivating moments — many displayed for the first time — with nearly every photographic format and every year between 1845 and 2022 represented. 

The exhibition features Australia’s oldest photograph, the earliest examples of colour photography, iconic works by some of our most acclaimed photographers and contemporary images and commentary by over 30 living photographers. 

On display for the first time are 25 large glass plate negatives from the Holtermann collection which form an astonishing 9-metre panorama of Sydney in 1875. 

Due to the delicate nature of numerous works, this may be the first and only time to see some of these rare images of Australia’s pictorial history on display.

Upcoming Events Submit an Event

March

Albury: The National Photography Prize offers a $30,000 acquisitive prize, the $5000 John and Margaret Baker Fellowship for an emerging practitioner, and further supports a number of artists through focused acquisitions.

April

The City Surveyor’s ‘Condemnation and Demolition Books’ is a key photographic collection held in the City Archives comprising almost 5000 photographs and associated glass plate negatives.

May

Ballarat: Art Gallery of Ballarat presents Lost in Palm Springs, a multidisciplinary exhibition that brings together fourteen creative minds who respond to, capture, or re-imagine the magical qualities of the landscape and the celebrated mid-century modern architecture of Palm Springs, California and across Australia.

Sydney: This popular internationally touring exhibition showcases the best and most important photojournalism and documentary photography of the last year.

June

Melbourne: Trainspotters images of the 4500 and Castle Class locomotives, 1930-1950s, Images from the Dienst Van Economishche Zaken (Netherlands) 1942-1947.

Sydney: Exhibition opening. Showcasing 100 bold and adventurous fashion portraiture images from both established and emerging photographers from Brisbane, Sydney, and Melbourne.

July

Wollongong: Employing magical realism and unique printing techniques, Cooper’s photographs place their inhabitants in a dreamlike world.

Sydney: Award-winning art director, trained architect and acclaimed photographer Damien Drew shines a light on the serene yet haunting landscapes of Japan’s Shikoku Island in his latest exhibition ‘Shikoku no Seijaku’ (Shikoku Silence).