Women*, Art and Feminism in Australia since 1970

Now in its second year, this Australian Research Council Project Women*, Art and Feminism in Australia since 1970 led by Professor Anne Marsh, documents the historical legacy and ongoing critical relevance of feminism in contemporary Australian art.

Engaging through nation-wide workshops, a curated residency program and a keynote symposium, the process is designed to give voice to complex positions, highlighting different interpretations rather than a unified point of view.

Revealing the roles and interactions between gender, race, class and ethnicity, the project will combine the source material collected with scholarly methodologies to provide a diverse and noisy cultural picture of Australia, women and feminist practices within visual art.

The symposium, Women, Art and Feminism in Australia since 1970 and the Residency program Doing Feminism/Sharing the world run concurrently with ACCA’s Unfinished Business, a major exhibition focussing on contemporary feminist art practice.

*Trans and non-binary inclusive

Symposium and Keynote Speakers

Women*, Art and Feminism in Australia since 1970 seeks to bring together diverging and complementary views on feminism, its history, practice and critical positions in the visual arts.

21st, 22nd and 23rd of February 2018
Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne.


Registrations open

Full symposium pass: $200        Single day ticket: $100
Keynotes only: $100                      Students/unwaged/delegate: $50

Student rush on the day with a valid student ID

Eventbrite - Women* Art and Feminism in Australia since 1970


*Tjanpi participation was pending successful funding, and unfortunately funding was not procured.

Tjanpi Desert Weavers is a social enterprise of the Ngaanyatjarra Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (NPY) Women’s Council created to enable women in remote central deserts to earn their income from fibre art. Tjanpi represents more than 400 Aboriginal women artists from 26 remote communities on the NPY lands which covers approximately 350,000 square kms across the tri-state (WA, SA, NT). Fibre artists Ilawanti Ungkutjuru Ken, Mary Katatjuku Pan and Nyurpaya Kaika-Burton will speak about their work and the Tjanpi Weavers.  Please note that funding is pending for this event.

A/Professor Jennifer Biddle is Director of Visual Anthropology & Visual Culture, and Senior Research Fellow at the National Institute for Experimental Arts (NIEA), UNSW.  She has worked with Warlpiri in Lajamanu for over two decades, as well as with other Central and Western Desert artists and art centres.  Her book breasts, bodies canvas: Central Desert Art as Experience (UNSW Press 2007) modelled a ‘feminisation of the Dreaming’ in the Papunya Tula movement and Remote Avant-garde: Aboriginal Art under Occupation (Duke UP 2016) models new and emergent desert Aboriginal aesthetics as an art of survival.

Professor Clare Hemmings is Professor of Gender Studies and Head of the Gender Institute at the London School of Economics. She is author of Bisexual Spaces: A Geography of Sexuality and Gender (2002), Why Stories Matter: The Political Grammar of Feminist Theory (2011) and Considering Emma Goldman: Feminist Political Ambivalence and Historical Imagination (in press with a launch date of December 2017).

Symposium: call for proposals

Proposals may be in the form of topics for conversations, artist’s presentations, scholarly papers, manifesto statements and other scripted text.

Whilst considering feminisms histories and futures within the visual arts, we are calling for proposals to generate conversations that may be facilitated within the symposium context.

Deadline for submissions November 17, 2017