A selection of publications recently supported by the Foundation
Aims, Guidelines and Application Procedures 2023
The Gordon Darling Foundation is a perpetual public charitable trust, established in 1991 to "support Australia-wide, activities of importance in the Visual Arts."
It will give priority to exhibitions of Australian, Asian, Pacific or other international art, or those of significant local importance.
It will assist with the costs of research, travel, publication, and the dissemination of knowledge and the enjoyment of all aspects of the visual arts to the widest possible audience.
The Foundation is normally prepared to support well-conceived projects of all kinds in the Visual Arts (other than capital works).
The Foundation encourages applications from all over Australia.
Who can apply?
The Foundation can only provide funding to Public Institutions in Australia. Applicant organisations must have Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) status.
Individuals wishing to apply for funding for projects must partner with a Public Institution which then takes on responsibility for the project.
The Trustees will normally award only one application per organisation in any twelve-month period. Darling Travel Grants are considered a separate funding stream and do not preclude an organisation from applying for or receiving a grant.
What we do
Funding may be provided for:
- catalogues and publications:
- that are scholarly, preferably with well-researched new information.
- that provide a permanent record of an exhibition, collection, or work of an artist or movement.
- marketing or promotional costs, if they aim to reach new audiences, especially young audiences.
- professional education initiatives, including individual professional development.
- collection management initiatives, including database development and conservation.
- research projects leading to the recognition and publication of material of significance.
- internationally known speakers for symposia.
In relation to catalogue projects, preference will be given to exhibitions which will tour a cluster of venues, sharing costs, staff and experience
Applications for international travel should only be made through the Darling Travel Grant / International program - see Application Procedures below.
What we don't do
The Foundation usually does not fund:
- capital works, acquisitions, prizes or commissions.
- general or core operational activities.
- retrospective funding.
- recurrent funding of a project or exhibition.
Guidelines for publication funding applications
In assessing applications for publication funding, several key factors will be considered, in addition to well-planned, scholarly content:
- pricing should be as accessible as possible and suited to anticipated audiences.
- print runs should be appropriate to reasonable anticipated demand.
- plans for distribution beyond the applicant’s venue/s should be noted, and are encouraged.
- circulating a large proportion of a print run as complimentary copies is usually discouraged, though gifts to a limited number of local, state and higher education libraries would be welcomed.
Grant reports received by the Foundation continue to show that publication print runs are often far in excess of sales, regardless of the quality of the publication. Applicants are encouraged to carefully consider anticipated sales when deciding on a print run.
The Foundation usually does not fund:
- publications to be given away.
- major publications which largely replicate existing publications.
- catalogues for commercial exhibitions.
- "vanity publications", whether of the institution, author or subject of the application.
- souvenir or promotional publications.
Other funding criteria
The Foundation will consider funding projects that provide new or increased audience access to the visual arts.
Projects will be expected to attract considerable public exposure (applications should include details).
The Foundation may be the sole grant provider, the lead donor, or a participant in a collaborative funding with other private and/or public donors.
The Foundation will not normally support projects that have been almost fully funded from other sources.By publishing these guidelines, the Foundation aims to encourage a high standard of application.
General Grant Program
- Read these guidelines to ensure that your project is a good fit.
- Contact the Gordon Darling Foundation to request the current year's application form:
- Email: - a brief description of your project would be advantageous.
- Phone: 03 9820 3168
- Applicants should phone the Foundation to discuss their proposed application prior to submission.
- Applications must be made using the current year's form and emailed to by 5pm (AEST/AEDT) on the closing date. The main application form should be submitted in the original Microsoft Word format. Supporting material should be submitted in A4 PDF format.
- Receipt of applications will be acknowledged by email.
- Applicants will be advised of outcomes by phone, and then by post.
Submissions will be examined by the Trustees of the Foundation three times a year. Applications for 2023 have now closed.
The application closing dates for 2024 are:
Darling Travel Grants / International
The aim of these grants is to provide visual arts professionals employed by Australian public institutions with the opportunity to undertake international travel. Travel must be for a specific purpose and deliver benefits for both the individual and the institution. Applicants should have written support from their Director or Board Chair to undertake the travel.
- Applications for the 2024 Darling Travel Grants / International open on Monday 13 November 2023.
- After this date, please email the Gordon Darling Foundation at to request an application form and guidelines.
- Applications must be submitted by email by 5pm on Friday 12 January 2024.
- Applicants will be advised of the outcome by Friday 1 March 2024.