Join us for an active enquiry into the possibilities of comparative art history led by independent art historian and curator Reiko Tomii with responses from four art historians working in Australia today.


Reiko Tomii has said that “influence is the perennial thorn in the side of the project of multiple modernisms”. How can art historians write a more rigorous and inclusive art history, amid the persistent privilege given to narratives of Euro-American influence? Tomii presents the concept of ‘resonance’ as a way to understand contemporaneous global art practices. Her application of this to the work of three artists active in the ‘wilderness’ in 1960s Japan provides a provocative point of departure for responses from a diverse panel of art historians, including Emily Brink, Peyvand Firouzeh, Charles Green and Mary Roberts. Join us for an active enquiry into the potential of comparative art histories from a range of historical and cultural contexts.


QUESTIONS from Reiko Tomii

1. What can or must we compare?

2. What can we gain from comparison?

3. How can we collate comparative findings?

Related questions for question 1:

4. Cheeky: Can we compare apples and oranges?

5. Serious: Can a methodology for modernism work for other time frames?


SUGGESTED READINGS from Reiko Tomii to be confirmed. Check back for updates.



Friday 1 November

9:00am – 11:30am

CCANESA Boardroom

Madsen Building

University of Sydney

NSW 2006



9:00am – 9:25am

Informal welcome with tea, coffee and light refreshments

9:30am – 9:50am

Reiko Tomii discusses the theme and framework of the ‘Possibilities of Comparative Art History’

9:50am -10:40am

Introduction with Olivier Krischer (moderator) and 10-minute responses from Emily Brink, Peyvand Firouzeh, Charles Green and Mary Roberts.

10:50 – 11:30

Moderated discussion with all in attendance.


Image: Photo courtesy of the speaker and Daphne Youree.