The gift shop was full and there was a lineup at the cafe outside the National Gallery of Australia on Sunday, with workers at both going into overdrive to meet the demands of crowds from the day's sold-out shows.
Monday marks the start of the final week of Botticelli to Van Gogh: Masterpieces from the National Gallery, London on exhibition alongside Know My Name.
"Oh yeah, it's been big," Lillie Jones remarked from behind the counter of the Street Cafe.
On the lawns, Tara Green took a moment to rest her feet on the Sunflowers themed deckchairs. She visited from Sydney with the specific purpose of seeing the show before it makes its way back to London next week.
In a first for the National Gallery, Masterpieces is on loan until June 14. Those yet to book their spot to see the show can still do so on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
Spanning 400 years, the exhibition includes 61 paintings by some of Europe's most revered artists, names like Botticelli, Rembrandt, Vermeer, Monet and Van Gogh.
With the very popular, Rembrandt's Self Portrait at the Age of 34, Vermeer's A Young Woman seated at a Virginal and Van Gogh's Sunflowers part of the collection.
Exhibition curator Sally Foster said crowd numbers have exceeded expectations, with the uncertainty of Covid keeping gallery staff guessing on how the show would pan out.
"I have to say, as soon as the works showed up we knew it was going to be a huge show. They were so good." she said.
"I thought, people are going to come and they're going to tell all their friends to come and that's what makes a blockbuster."
Ms Foster said the draw card of the big, mostly male names from Europe had drawn more eyes to the women featured in Know My Name, a happy coincidence.
Visiting from the Blue Mountains, Matt Loftus said attending the gallery was like being let out of a cage after the pandemic lockup.
"It was just so thrilling to see some culture again," he said.
"When you're looking at a Monet you can't help but be removed from your current environment. It's lovely to be back in this world." Ms Green said she would go home happy knowing the gallery was back.
"This time last year the thought of galleries and museums closing down was quite sad and now we're having this amazing exhibition plus the Know My Name exhibition side-by-side is just beautifully done," she said.
"To celebrate the work of females, which is especially important this year, alongside those Eurocentric pieces we've all known since we were children is wonderful."
Masterpieces is open 10-5pm daily and from 9-6pm each Saturday and Sunday for ticket holders. While the National Gallery extended its opening hours for the Queen's Birthday, those sessions have since booked out.
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