A Rabbit in the spotlight.

Reformation, the dictionary tells me, is an act of reforming an institution, now, I think you’ll agree that’s not very interesting in itself but it is very appropriate down in the inner Sydney suburb of Chippendale, because there’s two big reformations on at the moment, and the Chinese are behind them both. The old Tooths brewery complex has been totally reformed into a huge new shopping and apartment complex, imaginatively called Central Park, it’s very popular with the large Chinese community in Sydney, they’re snapping up all the trendy apartments as soon as they go on sale in the new complex, that’s one part of the reformation, the second reformation is down to Chinese art. More specifically the Chinese art found in the new contemporary art gallery, White Rabbit.
White Rabbit gallery
White Rabbit opened, without much fanfare, in 2009, and has steadily grown in stature over the past few years to now sit high on the list of the must see Sydney galleries. Privately owned by Judith Neilson and husband Kerr Neilson, the pair found an old Rolls Royce service station in the then rundown inner suburb and began a $10 million rebuild to turn the building into what it is today, a mecca for fans of contemporary Asian art.
White Rabbit gallery
The Chinese art scene has been white hot for a few years now, and the Neilson family have amassed over the past decade one of the largest collections in the world, concentrating their collection to works just made in the 21st century.
White Rabbit gallery
Their collection now numbers around 1000 individual art works, and the gallery, while a modern, spacious and light filled space, cannot show more that a sampling at any one time. To overcome this issue they completely re-hang the space twice a year to show off different artists and their work. The show on at the moment is called, wait for it, reformation, and with around 50 works it gives you a chance to explore some of the most cutting edge Chinese art around.
White Rabbit gallery
The gallery was named after Judith Neilson bought a small white porcelain figurine of a girl holding a white rabbit, she suggested then, as a name, The White Rabbit, everyone loved it ( she’s the boss after all ) and the name stuck. It’s a place of wonder, made even more wonderous by the twice daily free gallery tours. After you’re gotten your fill of art works they also have a cute little tea house on the ground floor, and while they have a small selection of tarts and cakes the Chinese tea and dumplings are a specialty, and somehow more appropriate. A great spot to reform your hunger.

White Rabbit gallery


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