top of page

Sidney Nolan's Ned Kelly series

16 November 2019 – 23 February 2020 
Sidney Nolan’s 1946-47 paintings depicting the 19th century bush ranger Ned Kelly are among the most significant Australian paintings of the 20th century. 


Nolan’s Ned Kelly series is a distillation of a complex, layered story set in the Victorian landscape and centred around a nineteenth-century bushranger and his gang who were on the run from the police.


Landscape is a key element in the paintings—as Nolan said, ‘it began in the landscape and ended in the landscape’. The series also depends upon a loosely threaded but vital dramatic human narrative that has its catalyst with Constable Fitzpatrick and Kate Kelly 1946 in the domestic arena of the Kelly family home where a fracas occurs, and ends with The trial 1947, in a Melbourne courtroom where Ned Kelly is sentenced to death.

The marriage of a feeling for the environment and human drama imbues these paintings with meaning and poetic resonance. While the legendary aspect is informed by social history, some of the paintings are embellished by Nolan’s lively imagination.


MAGNT Darwin

19 Conacher Street

The Gardens, Darwin NT

Open daily 10am–4pm
+61 8 8999 8264

Closed Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year's Day and Good Friday

Admission fees apply


Book ahead

textured Ned2.png

#NedinDarwin Challenge

We're breaking an Australian record!


To celebrate Sidney Nolan’s Ned Kelly series in Darwin, MAGNT calls on you to participate in the #NedinDarwin Challenge. Help us reach more than 100 Ned Kelly lookalikes to make a new record for The Australian Book of Records! 

Everyone is welcome to join in the fun. Sport a Ned Kelly inspired helmet or show off your real (or fake!) beard and moustache.

Join us to achieve this exciting #NedinDarwin Australian record.


Related events


Sidney Nolan
Ned Kelly 1946
from the Ned Kelly series 1946 – 1947
enamel paint on composition board
90.80 x 121.50 cm 
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra

Gift of Sunday Reed 1977


Sidney Nolan

The trial 1947

from the Ned Kelly series 1946 – 1947

enamel paint on composition board

90.70 x 121.20 cm
National Gallery of Australia. Canberra

Gift of Sunday Reed 1977


This is a touring exhibition from the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra.
bottom of page