The founder and creative director, Shirley Wagner, has been the driving force of Wagner Art Gallery since its inception in 1978. Regarded as one of the true matriarchs of the Australian art scene, she has fostered and managed the careers of many great artists.

In addition to promoting Australian artists locally, she has taken many exhibitions overseas, touring in major markets such as Tokyo and New York. In the 1990s she opened her gallery doors in Hong Kong. Wagner Art Gallery HK was the first commercial gallery of its kind to showcase Australiaís artistic talent to an eager audience in Asia. Some of the artists toured overseas include Charles Blackman, Arthur Boyd, Sidney Nolan and Pro Hart (see below). Over the years she has also brought many great international artists to Sydney, including Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein.

Although Shirley has now retired from daily work at the gallery, her daughter Nadine continues to uphold her motherís legacy. Nadine brings to her role a wealth of knowledge of Australian art and strong expertise in collection management and development. Nadine is a qualified valuer and is always on hand to assist with any enquiries related to collections and investment, appraisals and valuations.