About

Free entry

Explore a diverse range of contemporary artworks, engage in thought-provoking conversations, and participate in creative art-making programs that celebrate the transformative power of art.

Incinerator Gallery is part of Moonee Valley City Council. Learn more about Council's commitment to presenting arts and culture in the strategy Igniting Creativity in Moonee Valley 23-27.

Incinerator Gallery is a proud member of the PGAV (Public Galleries Association of Victoria), NAVA (National Association for the Visual Arts) and AMaGA (Australian Museums and Galleries Association).

Open Hours

Open 11am to 4pm Tuesday to Sunday

Closed on public holidays and during exhibition change over periods.

2024 exhibition change over dates:

  • 22 January to 1 February
  • 8 April to 18 April
  • 24 June to 4 July
  • 9 September to 19 September
  • 25 November to 5 December

Access

Incinerator Gallery is an accessible venue. For specific information about access requirements, please contact us directly.

Contact

Address: 180 Holmes Road, Aberfeldie, 3040

Phone: 03 9243 1750

Email: incinerator@mvcc.vic.gov.au

 

Staff

  • Dr Christine Healey (she/her), Public Programs and Schools Education Officer
  • Jake Treacy (they/them), Curator
  • MJ Flamiano (she/her), Public and Community Arts Officer

Getting here

Free parking is available beside and opposite the gallery and there are plenty of options for travelling to us by public transport.

Take a virtual tour of Incinerator Gallery

Images courtesy of Hidden Melbourne

A brief history

The City of Essendon commissioned world-renowned architects Walter Burley Griffin and Marion Mahony, and engineering company REICO in 1929 to build a state of the art and world-leading incinerator. They wanted a building to house the furnaces that would burn the city’s waste but not look like an industrial facility.

The Griffin’s proposal achieved this by following the principles of Prairie School architecture that were developed earlier in their careers in Chicago with local architects including Frank Lloyd Wright. Their aim was to create a building that fitted harmoniously into its environment with Walter Burley Griffin stating that “the final test of modernism is the replacement of industrial eyesores”.

The City of Essendon’s new building was lauded for its beauty and effectiveness and used until it was decommissioned in 1942. It was left to deteriorate until 1984, when the City of Essendon reopened the facility as a community theatre before closing again after a few years due to funding issues. Its arts legacy was not long forgotten though, with the site undergoing a conservation program, reopening as a multi-arts facility in 2004 as the Incinerator Arts Complex.

The venue was renamed the Incinerator Gallery in 2011 and refocused on a new plan to establish it as a premier visual arts destination in Melbourne’s West.

Want to learn more? Incinerator Gallery offers regular free history tours for the public led by Incinerator volunteers. Click here to find out more or contact us at incinerator@mvcc.vic.gov.au to request a custom tour for your community group.

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Historical Timeline Of The Incinerator Gallery

  • 1920's

    'The Rattery'

    Population was booming, bringing new wealth, new residents – and more waste. The Essendon tip, known locally as “The Rattery”, was smelly and dangerous.

    The community called for a solution that was both practical and attractive; one that would improve public health without lowering property values.

    It was not an easy ask.

  • 1928 

    Enter Walter Burley Griffin

    The City of Essendon commissioned world-renowned architect Walter Burley Griffin and engineering company REICO in 1929 to build a state of the art and world-leading incinerator.

    They wanted a building to house the furnaces that would burn the city’s waste but not look like an industrial facility.

  • 1929

    Open

    The new building opened in 1929 and led the world for 13 years. It was clean, efficient, and far safer than other models.

    Burley Griffin and his team designed more than a dozen similar furnaces around the country before World War II changed the industrial landscape in an extreme way.

  • 1942

    Closed

    The Incinerator closed in 1942, when the furnaces were no longer required.

    For 42 years the site was used for little more than storing machinery and was left to deteriorate. 

  • 1984

    Arts legacy

    In 1984, the City of Essendon reopened the facility as a community theatre before closing again after a few years due to funding issues. Its arts legacy was not long forgotten though, with the site undergoing a conservation program.

  • 2004

    Incinerator Arts Complex

    In 2004, the City of Moonee Valley restored the unused building and created the Incinerator Arts Complex with both a theatre and gallery spaces.

  • 2011

    Incinerator Gallery

    The venue was renamed the Incinerator Gallery in 2011 and refocused on a new plan to establish it as a premier visual arts destination in Melbourne’s West.

Art Collection

The Moonee Valley City Council Art Collection reflects, celebrates and contributes to the authentic and distinctive culture of Moonee Valley.

The Collection includes artworks created by professional artists and community members who live in the area or have been inspired by the local environment. It includes objects that encompass media including painting, sculpture, ceramic, glass, textile, as well as public art, billboards, murals and mosaics. Artworks are displayed throughout Moonee Valley and Council venues.

Explore Moonee Valley City Council's art collection on eHive. ↗

Volunteer With Us

Applications to volunteer will open later in 2024.

View the Volunteer Role Description for full details including requirements.

We appreciate and value the dedication and commitment of our volunteers.

By becoming a part of the Incinerator Gallery team, volunteers will enjoy such benefits as presentation and engagement training, involvement in exhibitions and openings and networking opportunities.

Applicants should be enthusiastic, possess excellent interpersonal and presentation skills and have a passion for art, architecture, the environment and local history.

You can also read this volunteer profile from Georgie, one of our amazing volunteers. Georgie explains why she loves volunteering at the Incinerator Gallery.

For any further questions about the Incinerator Gallery Volunteer Involvement program email incinerator@mvcc.vic.gov.au.

To learn about volunteering at Moonee Valley City Council more generally or to discover other opportunities to volunteer in Moonee Valley, go to Moonee Valley Volunteering.

Moonee Valley is a member of Volunteering Victoria. The state peak body for volunteering, focusing on advocacy, sector development and the promotion of volunteering.

Volunteering Victoria is the state peak body for volunteering, focusing on advocacy, sector development and the promotion of volunteering.

Frequently Asked Questions