Videos from The Australian Object: Material Culture in Context symposium are now available online. The symposium took place on October 3-4 2019 at National Art School and featured the fascinating research of many art historians in Australia.
Session 1: Objects in motion
- Maria Nugent, Australian National University
- Stephen Gilchrist, University of Sydney
- Mark de Vitis, University of Sydney
Session 2: Making connections: materiality and identity
- Jonathan Jones, artist and University of Technology, Sydney
- Alison Inglis, University of Melbourne
Session 3: Objects and ecologies of Sydney
- Alisa Bunbury, Ian Potter Museum of Art
- Deborah Beck, National Art School
Session 4: Polite violence: objects and frontier histories
- Fiona Foley, Griffith University
- Molly Duggins, National Art School
Session 5: Magic lantern slides: animations and resurrections
- Martyn Jolly and Elisa deCourcy, Australian National University
Session 6: The cast reinscribed
- Greg Lehman, University of Melbourne
- Lorraine Kypiotis, National Art School
Session 7: Rethinking Australiana
- Anita Callaway, University of Sydney
- Priya Vaughan, National Art School
ABOUT THE SYMPOSIUM
The recordings of this two-day symposium present new scholarly research on the material culture of Australia. Papers address the rich diversity of objects and the processes, knowledge, and meanings embedded therein. Our purpose is to revitalise the discourse on marginalised media and quotidian culture and bring sc holars, artists, curators and collectors into productive dialogue. Focusing on making meaning through materials, this symposium reinforces the National Art School’s core emphasis on object-led art practices and histories.
Despite renewed interest in material culture, the conversation about objects often remains siloed in discrete disciplines of anthropology, archaeology, design history and museology. Building on the material turn in art history, this symposium aims to explore productive interdisciplinary methodologies for engaging with Australian objects. In particular, our approach aims to draw into conversation objects that have been previously occluded in these discourses.
To prioritise the object and foster dialogue, each presentation will take the form of a 20-minute case study of an Australian object. Case studies will address the object’s material and sensorial properties and the specific aesthetic frameworks through which it has acquired meaning and value, including how production, use, circulation and exchange has shaped the life of the object. Case studies may also consider how these objects connect with, undermine, or complicate notions of art, taste, authenticity, tradition, value, identity, and nationhood broadly defined.
The Australian Object symposium was presented by the National Art School in partnership with the Power Institute.