About the Foundation

The Ian Potter Foundation was established in 1964 by Australian financier, businessman and philanthropist, Sir Ian Potter (1902 – 1994).  The Foundation is now one of Australia’s major philanthropic foundations.

Based in Melbourne, the Foundation makes grants nationally to support charitable organisations working to benefit the community across a wide range of sectors and endeavours.  

The Potter Ian Potter MOA Casamento

Our Grantmaking

The Ian Potter Foundation awards grants across four pillars corresponding to our Vision:

  • Fair
  • Healthy
  • Sustainable
  • Vibrant

Within these pillars are six program areas that reflect our founder's interest in the arts, and his visionary approach to issues including medical research, the environment, education and community wellbeing. Above all, Sir Ian understood the importance of investing in Australia's intellectual capital

Through its grants, the Foundation seeks to encourage excellence and support Australia's talent: the innovators, social entrepreneurs, scientists, academics and researchers, artists and teachers, and those in our society who dedicate themselves to bettering our communities for the benefit of all.

Since 1964, The Ian Potter Foundation has contributed over $380 million to thousands of projects, both large and small. Led by its Board of Governors, the Foundation has a strong track record of funding projects that respond decisively to key issues and develop our creativity and capacity as a nation.

The Foundation's largest grants include $20 million awarded in 2020 supporting the establishment of NGV Contemporary, $15 million awarded in 2000 supporting the establishment of the National Gallery of Victoria's gallery of Australian art in Federation Square, and $15 million to the Peter MacCallum Cancer Foundation in 2012 supporting the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Project.

In recognition of Sir Ian Potter

The map below shows the many cultural, educational and medical institutions across Australia that have chosen to recognise The Ian Potter Foundation's philanthropic support by naming galleries, art centres, research facilities and gardens after its founder, Sir Ian Potter.

To view where these places are, simply zoom in and out. To see the full list click the icon in the top left corner of the map.