Contemporary Art and Feminism
We are waving the Red Flag and calling on all artists, writers, students and creative thinkers who have an interest in or a passion for feminism to come together in one ever-evolving and multifaceted project called Contemporary Art and Feminism (CAF). The project is currently based at the University of Sydney, across disciplines of visual arts and art history, but hopes to attract participants and contributors from around Australia and internationally who represent the most dynamic and current interpretations of the links between contemporary art and feminism. We envision CAF as an independent platform for art, scholarship and activism.
This call responds to what we perceive as a massive groundswell in engagement and curiosity about feminism’s role in the development of contemporary art and its current relevance to art-making and analysis. CAF aims to be a major point of coalescence for this groundswell, to facilitate collaboration and communication that may grow into specific events and outcomes, such as exhibitions, online archives, publications, conferences, and symposia.
The project is being steered by academics and curators with a long-standing commitment to the making, documentation, analysis and promotion of art practice and art writing which is informed by feminism and contributes to feminist understandings of our social and political realities.
CAF has a number of existing objectives, but is responsive to changes that emerge from a growing number of active voices. At this stage, we are aiming to:
•create a community of artists, writers, researchers with a common interest in the generative relationship between contemporary art and feminism
•create an online presence, through a combination of blog, website and social media, that acts as a resource for this community and the general public for information about events and activities that engage with contemporary art and feminism
•create an ever expanding archive of feminist materials relating to contemporary art and its modernist forebears that represents the most dynamic and current thinking in the field
•provide a platform for the development of collaborative research projects on specific issues relating to the links between contemporary art and feminism
•host activities and events, including symposia, exhibitions, performances and forums, that may lead to scholarly publications and outcomes as well as generate broader interest in feminist perspectives on the visual arts
To achieve our first objective, we are asking you to register your interest in being part of the project by emailing us or posting on our Facebook site. You can send us links to your activities that we will list on our site, as well as suggestions for content.
We are planning a series of symposia and exhibitions in the lead up to the 40th anniversary of International Women’s Day in March 2015, which will also mark the 20th anniversary of the National Women’s Art Exhibition that took place around Australia in dozens of galleries and museums, from state institutions to artist run spaces. We will begin in March 2014 with an event that focuses on how to link the energy of contemporary local practices with the educational experience of emerging feminist voices. In October, we plan to focus on arts activism informed by feminism, with a regional perspective. In March 2015, we envision a more ambitious event that takes account of the historical significance of feminist interventions in the visual arts. And in October 2015, our plan is to re-consider the status of the hand-made object in feminist art debates. We welcome your responses to these thematic ‘hotspots’.
We look forward to hearing from you!
Jacqueline Millner, Sydney College of the Arts, University of Sydney
Catriona Moore, Art History and Film Studies, University of Sydney
Jo Holder, Director, Cross Arts Projects