It must be the only art gallery in the world which has a bus regularly drive through it.
Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital's Art Gallery is on the ground floor of the hospital's E block, right next door to patient transport and the little bus that takes patients from one part of the hospital to another passes through it many times a day.
"It's one of the reasons we can't have free-standing art such as sculptures on display," said Joanna Wakefield, the gallery's curator (and a sculptor). "We stick to works of art on the walls because it's safer too," she said.
Joanna works two days a week, taking care of the hospital's collection of 700 paintings and drawings, most of which are permanently displayed on walls in public areas, such as the corridors, waiting rooms and ward areas.
The exhibition in the small gallery changes three or four times a year. Joanna said it was set up in 1990 so the hospital could be registered under the Cultural Gifts Program for taxation purposes for donors of art.
Another thing that sets it apart from other galleries is that it is open every day, 24 hours a day, although the doors through which the bus drives are locked from 9pm to 7am.
When UWA News visited, the National Science Week exhibition of pathology images was in its last days. The current exhibition is a collections of paintings donated by Dr Margaret Feilman, who was one of Australia's first female architects. Nothing in the gallery is for sale and the hospital's collection policy is to concentrate on works by Western Australians, followed by other Australian artists.
"We choose mainly landscapes and figurative works," Joanna said. "We are promoting a healing environment, using art for therapeutic purposes, so we don't want any aggressive, dark or sexually explicit works." Entries are now open for the biennial acquisitive art prize, which will be exhibited and awarded next year. Next time you are at QEII, take a look at this little-known gallery.