Following the example of academies of art elsewhere which have associated galleries exhibiting important works of art, the then Academy of Fine Arts gradually started to purchase works, obtain donations, and collect students' works which had received awards as well as current work by its own professors. The first purchase of 15 art prints by various authors and two drawings by Hinko Smrekar had already taken place by 1948. Major acquisitions of high-quality work date from the 1960s; purchases of selected work by artists who were not members of the academy staff set off a series of donations from the ranks of the professors.
Among the selected artists are Matej Sternen, Miha Maleš, Karel Putrih, Jakob Savinšek, Marko Šuštaršič, Gregorio Sciltian and some eminent academy teachers: Anton Gojmir Kos, Marij Pregelj, Janez Bernik, Gustav Gnamuš, Boris and Zdenko Kalin, Slavko Tihec, Drago, and Dušan Tršar. Graphic artists featured include the founders of the Ljubljana Graphics School: Božidar Jakac, France Mihelič, Maksim Sedej, Riko Debenjak, Bogdan Pogačnik, and Vladimir Makuc.