Reading Bennett: The Artist in his Own Words

To mark the launch of the Gordon Bennett: Selected Writings, four speakers read selections from Bennett’s archive, and responded to his words in the context of their own practice and scholarship.

This event took place on 14 November 2020.

About the Book

Gordon Bennett: Selected Writings is the first publication to survey the writing practice of the late Gordon Bennett (1955–2014), providing vital insight into one of Australia’s most important contemporary artists.

The collection is edited by Angela Goddard and Tim Riley Walsh, and co-published by Power Publications, Sydney, and Griffith University Art Museum, Brisbane. In addition to key writings published during the artist’s lifetime, the book also provides glimpses into Bennett’s personal archive via the reproduction of previously unseen notebooks, correspondence, sketches, preparatory compositions, and more. Offering new knowledge of his creative process, intellectual and artistic influences and professional relationships, this project amplifies Bennett’s already significant contribution to subjects of race and identity in national and global contexts, as well as reaffirming his centrality to postcolonial discourse in the twenty-first century.

RRP $45.00 AUD
ISBN 978-0-909952-01-3 / 66 images, including colour plates / 216 pp; paperback with dust jacket / 297 x 210 mm/ 890 gms

About the speakers

Kelly Gellatly is an arts advocate, curator and writer. She has curated more than 50 exhibitions of the work of leading Australian and international artists and has published extensively on contemporary art, Australian modernism and photographic practice. She was Director of the Ian Potter Museum of Art, University of Melbourne from 2013-2020; Curator of Contemporary Art at the National Gallery of Victoria from 2003-2013, and has held curatorial positions at the National Gallery of Australia and Heide Museum of Modern Art. Kelly is passionate about facilitating and encouraging the broadest possible access to the arts, particularly contemporary practice and to supporting the leadership potential of women in the arts.

Stephen Gilchrist belongs to the Yamatji people of the Inggarda language group of northwest Western Australia and is Lecturer of Indigenous Art at the University of Sydney. He is a writer and curator who has worked with the Indigenous Australian collections of the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra (2003-2005), the British Museum, London (2008), the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (2005-2010) and the Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College (2011-2013). Stephen has curated numerous exhibitions in Australia and the United States and has written extensively on Indigenous art from Australia. He has taught Indigenous art in Australia and in the United States. From 2012-2016 he was the Australian Studies Visiting Curator at the Harvard Art Museums, Harvard University.

Judy Watson is one of Australia’s most significant contemporary artists. Born in Mundubbera, Queensland, Watson’s Aboriginal matrilineal family are from Waanyi country in north-west Queensland. Her work reveals hidden stories within Country, working from site and memory, revealing Indigenous histories, following lines of emotional and physical topography that centre on particular places and moments in time. She co-represented Australia in the 1997 Venice Biennale, was awarded the Moët & Chandon Fellowship in 1995, the National Gallery of Victoria’s Clemenger Award in 2006 and, in the same year, the Works on Paper Award at the 23rd National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Award. In 2011 her exhibition waterline was exhibited at the Embassy of Australia, Washington, DC. In 2012 she exhibited in the Sydney Biennale. Her work is held in major Australian and international collections including: National Gallery of Australia; all Australian state art galleries; The Tate Modern, London; Taipei Fine Arts Museum; St Louis Art Museum USA; The British Museum, London; Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, University of Cambridge, UK; Library of Congress, Washington, USA; Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginal Art Collection, University of Virginia, USA; as well as important private collections. She has exhibited widely over the past twenty-five years.

Tim Riley Walsh is an emerging art historian and curator based in Brisbane. Riley Walsh is the Australia Desk Editor for ArtAsiaPacific, Hong Kong, and a Post-Thesis Fellow within the School of Communication and Arts, University of Queensland. He is the Co-Editor of Gordon Bennett: Selected Writings (2020, Power Publications, Sydney, and Griffith University Art Museum, Brisbane) and a previous contributor to Frieze, Art Monthly Australasia, Art + Australia, Apollo, Runway, and Artlink. Riley Walsh has previously worked for Milani Gallery, Brisbane; Camden Arts Centre, London; and the Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane.

Presented by

This event was presented by Power Publications, Sydney, and Griffith University Art Museum, Brisbane, in association with QAGOMA, Brisbane.