To record and publish online the history of Australian contemporary art through interviews, discussions and thoughts from a selection of the most prominent elder artists at present working in Australia.
Contemporary Australian art has seen dramatic growth since the 1930's. Many young Australian artists went overseas mainly to Europe during and after the second world war to study and work. On returning to Australia, they contributed their knowledge, new ideas and experiences bringing change and energy to the developing Australian artistic diaspora.
These young artists have now become the elder states-men and women of Australian art. They have contributed to the growth of confidence in Australia of our of our own contemporary culture and artistic language. The artists who have informed the development of our post colonial culture are now elderly and we will soon be in the unfortunate position of losing many of them. It is important that we capture the stories of their lives, their experiences, influences and thoughts directly from them as soon as possible. This enables their contribution to Australian art to be available into the future for all to see and experience in a personal and intuitive way.
Academic treatises covering this period exist but these do not communicate the first-hand experiences of the players involved. They serve a different purpose: aiming to dissect the eras and explain the motivations, politics and directions behind art movements. This project instead aims to contribute to the overall knowledge of these times by recording and publishing interviews with these states-men and women, publishing their own stories in their own language and style utilising examples of their work and connected ephemera to highlight their contribution to Australia as artists.
The collection of stories will form the beginnings of a more complete record of the development of the Australian art through the eyes of its contributors, an online record able to be accessed by educators, students, artists and the interested public and linked to other collections such as the Dictionary of Australian Artists Online.
The attached files detail the proposed site architecture and project requirements.
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