Sea of Dreams: The Lure of Port Phillip Bay 1830-1914

Opens at the Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery Wednesday 7 December 10am

Shattered dreams, fresh beginnings, an expansive economy, rising fears and the emergence of a middle class are detailed in this rich display that traces the journeys of so many who were lured by the dream of a better life.

Sea of dreams tells the fascinating story of Port Phillip Bay and the integral part it played in 19th and early 20th century survival, settlement, trade and commerce, defence and leisure.

With more than 100 works displayed, many of Australia’s best known and loved artists are represented. There are paintings by Charles Conder, Fred McCubbin, Tom Roberts, Arthur Streeton and Louis Buvelot, along with rare drawings and prints by Emma Minnie Boyd, S. T. Gill, Georgiana McCrae, John Mather and Eugene von Guérard.

Sea of dreams and its catalogue convey a quiet sense of excitement. Port Phillip Bay is rarely, if ever, celebrated in this way. After all, Melbourne, for valid reasons, is less exuberant about its harbour than Sydney; and yet this wide expanse of bay stands high in the imagination and affection of generations of Victorians.
Professor Geoffrey Blainey, extract from exhibition catalogue.

Exclusively displayed at the Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery 7 December 2011 – 19 February 2012.

Christmas opening hours

Open 10am– 5pm Tuesday– Sunday, including New Years Day and Monday 2 January
Closed Christmas Day and Boxing Day