What's On

Current exhibition

Captain Cook & the Art of Memorabilia

Now open

Explore Captain Cook through the objects connected to him, and contemporary and First Nations responses to his impact on Australia.

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Events

Public programmes

The David Roche Foundation hosts a diverse range of talks and public programmes all year round. Click here to find out more about our upcoming programs and events.

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Book a Tour

Tours of Fermoy House

Tuesday – Saturday
10:00am, 12:00pm, 2:00pm

(Due to current SA Government regulations, tours are limited to 10 people, in 2 groups of no more than 5)

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About David Roche

David J Roche AM (1930–2013), a collector for almost sixty years, spent his lifetime developing what has become The David Roche Collection. The collection, which spans the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and includes European furniture, ceramics, metal ware, clocks and paintings, is remarkable in its quality and range. It contains many luxury works by leading designers displaying exquisite workmanship, as well as the quirky and playful, and as such reflects the many interests and engaging personality of its creator.

The opportunity for David to form such a collection came from the business acumen and success of his father, J.D.K. (Jack) Roche (1901–58). J.D.K. Roche founded the Adelaide Development Company, a property development business in 1922. He then moved to Perth where David Roche was born in 1930. He was the fourth of six children, two boys and four girls. David Roche’s first schooling was in Perth, and later in Adelaide. He then attended Geelong Grammar School in Victoria for his secondary schooling. After school he was sent to work on the family property in WA but the isolation convinced him he was not suited to a farming life.

David went to work briefly in the family firm’s Perth office before returning to work in the Adelaide office. At this time the Adelaide Development Company was situated in Grenfell Street. Opposite was the auction firm Theodore Bruce & Co. David began to attend auction sales gaining experience in bidding in the late 1940s and into the 50s. This was the beginning of a long self-education in art, particularly in the decorative arts and, above all, in furniture and ceramics. David continued to upgrade his collection until his death in 2013.

Image: David Roche in the Roman Room, Fermoy House, 2008.

Photo: David Mariuz for the BRW list.

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The Collection

The David Roche Foundation was established in 1999 by the late Mr David J Roche AM (1930–2013) to be the recipient and custodian of the exceptional collection of antiques, paintings and objets d’art accumulated by him over his lifetime and to be preserved for future generations.

The David Roche Foundation collection, housed in David’s Fermoy House in Adelaide, South Australia, is one of the greatest decorative arts collections in a private institution in Australia. It spans two centuries of European design from the early rococo of France to Faberge in Russia.

The House is open by guided tour Tuesday to Saturday 10AM, 12PM & 2PM.

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Book A Tour

Join us at The David Roche Foundation for guided tours of Fermoy House, David’s residence, and special exhibitions in the adjoining gallery wing. Enjoy the sumptuous house interiors crammed with objects collected over a lifetime and admire individual works of art displayed in the gallery.

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Access to Fermoy House is by guided tour only.

Book a tour now to reserve your spot.

Limited parking available onsite.

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Tours of Fermoy House

Tuesday Saturday

General: $20, Concession: $17

Max. 10 visitors per tour (in 2 groups, no exceptions)

Telephone assisted bookings incur a fee of $8 per ticket

Ticket includes entry into Captain Cook & The Art of Memorabilia

Please select your preferred time below:

10:00AM 12:00PM 2:00PM

 

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