Past exhibitions

Image: Brad Rusbridge and Emma Busowsky Cox installing Gosia Wlodarczak FOUND IN TRANSLATION, Interpretation Drawing: SIGNS, 2015, Deakin University Art Gallery. Photo: Longin Sarnecki.

Melbourne is famous for its art but you don’t need to go into the city to enjoy a visual feast. The Deakin University Art Gallery showcases works by Australian artists in six exhibitions a year.

Past exhibitions

Hannah Quinlivan: Travelling Light

Exhibition dates: 14 September to 20 October 2017

Deakin University Art Gallery
Melbourne Campus at Burwood, Building FA
221 Burwood Highway, Victoria

Open Tuesday to Friday, 10am to 4pm

Drawing moves between materials like steel, the body and voice in the work of artist Hannah Quinlivan. Working in collaboration with artists, classically-trained vocalists and dancers, Travelling Light explores the notion of adaptation in a time of constant motion. The question of movement seems to haunt our times. Some move freely while others are forced to stand still – creating new types of tension. This exhibition based on a series of dance, movement, sound and sculptural urban interventions developed in Berlin, culminates at the Deakin University Art Gallery at Burwood Campus.

Images and footage from the official opening night on Wednesday 13 September, including a special performance of Transition with vocalists Louise Keast and Shikara Ringdahl, can be found on our Facebook page.

Visit our YouTube page to watch the Deakin Alumni Webinar from 6 September, Travelling Light with Exhibition Artist Hannah Quinlivan.

Art and Performance by Research

Exhibition Dates: 26 July to 8 September 2017

This exhibition at the Deakin University Art Gallery brings together thirteen artists and current Higher Degree by Research candidates in the fields of Art and Performance within the School of Communication and Creative Arts at Deakin. Co-curated by Professor David Cross, Dr Patrick Pound and James Lynch. This large scale exhibition expands across four locations at Deakin University including the Art Gallery and the main library gallery space at Melbourne's Burwood Campus, the Pop Up gallery at Deakin Downtown and The Project Space at the Geelong Waterfront Campus.

Locations, artists and hours:

Deakin University Art Gallery, Melbourne Campus at Burwood, building FA, 221 Burwood Highway, Victoria

Open Tuesday to Friday, 10am to 4pm.

Artists featured: Anindita Banerjee, Jane Bartier, Bindi Cole Chocka, Shane McGrath and Monique Redmond.

Deakin Downtown 'Pop Up' gallery, Level 12, Tower 2, Collins Square, 727 Collins St, Melbourne

Open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.

Artist featured: Jem Noble,

Deakin University The Project Space, Geelong Waterfront Campus, Corner Cunningham St and Western Beach Rd, Geelong, Victoria.

Open Wednesday to Friday, 12.30pm to 4.30pm.

Artists featured: Sandy Gibbs, Merinda Kelly, Raffaele Rufo, Amber Smith, Dario Vacirca and Sorcha Wilcox.

University Library at Melbourne Burwood campus, building V, 221 Burwood Highway, Burwood Victoria.  

Open seven days 8am to midnight.

Artist featured: Shelley Jardine

Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award

7 June – 14 July 2017

Deakin University Art Gallery
Building FA, Melbourne Burwood Campus,
221 Burwood Highway, Burwood, Victoria

Open Tuesday to Friday, 10am – 4pm

In its ninth year, this annual acquisitive award and exhibition is organised by the Art Collection and Galleries Unit at Deakin University.

Applications for the award closed on 13 April 2017 and the winner, Melbourne-based artist Richard Stringer, was announced at the launch of the five-week exhibition of finalists' works on Tuesday 6 June.

Deakin Vice-Chancellor, Professor Jane den Hollander, presented Mr Stringer with the $10,000 acquisitive prize for his work titled, House on Fire. The piece will now become part of the Deakin University Art Collection.

Download the media release about the Contemporary Small Sculpture Award winner (PDF, 120.2 KB)

Deakin Vice-Chancellor, Professor Jane den Hollander, with the Contemporary Small Sculpture Award winner, Richard Stringer.

No Turning Back: Artworks from The Torch

29 May to 14 July 2017

Deakin University "Pop Up" Gallery
Deakin Downtown, Level 12 – Tower 2
Collins Square, 727 Collins Street, Melbourne Docklands

Open to the public 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday

The Torch supports current and former Indigenous offenders in Victoria through its indigenous Arts in Prisons and Community program.

The program provides art, cultural strengthening and arts vocational support to Indigenous inmates and parolees who are greatly over represented in the criminal justice system.

Opportunities to create new pathways through art and culture and reduce recidivism are central to the program.

Namib Mata Mata, Yorta Yorta/Muthi Muthi, Magpie Goose Hunting, Acrylic on canvas 2016, 131 x 100 cm


Unproductive Thinking

Jessie Bullivant, Lauren Burrow, Eugene Carchesio, Laresa Kosloff, Rob Mchaffie, Ian Milliss, Elyse De Valle and Simon Zoric.

26 April – 26 May 2017

Increasingly we are asked to be improving ourselves seemingly 24/7. The pressure to be transforming into something better is constant but for what purpose and what reward? Unproductive Thinking mediates on these ideologies. How do artists engage their time and how does the production of art differ from the incessant push to be always efficient, diligent and productive members of society. Unproductive Thinking features the humorous, poetic and mundane means artists employ to seek out imaginative alternatives.

The exhibition features work by Australia's leading emerging and established artists displayed throughout Deakin University's Burwood campus.

Laresa Kosloff I can't do anything (detail) 2015 HD video with sound 1:56 mins. Image courtesy of the artist


ON THE SHEEP'S BACK by Francis Reiss

30 March – 12 May 2017 
7 June – 14 July 2017

In the 1950s, the wool trade epitomised the Australian way of life. Australia's export economy rode high 'on the sheep's back'. In this captivating exhibition, photojournalist Francis Reiss documents the life and times of a rural enterprise at Burren Burren, near Collarenebri, New South Wales. Enduring images of Rex White and his family, taken in 1951, offer a glimpse of the 30,000 acres and 5000 sheep that symbolise a successful farm at the height of the wool boom in Australia.

Rex White
Francis Reiss, Rex White, the iconic farmer 1951, re-printed 2013

What does this one do?

27 July–2 September 2016


What does this one do? interrogates the relationship between engagement and entertainment. With increased recognition of the visitor and the rise of an audience voiced by social media, what does it actually mean to engage?

Guest curated by Carly Grace and Michelle Mountain through the Deakin University Museum Studies Alumni Program.

Anna Varendorff and Haima Marriott - Bouba - detail - 2016 - Photo Haima Marriott
Anna Varendorff with Haima Marriott Bouba (detail), 2016, brass, light and sound, dimensions variable. Photo: Haima Marriott.

Deakin University Contemporary Small Sculpture Award

8 June–15 July 2016

In its eighth year, this annual acquisitive award and exhibition is organised by the Art Collection and Galleries Unit at Deakin University. One outstanding entry is awarded $10,000 and becomes part of the Deakin University Art Collection.

Melbourne artist Geoffrey Bartlett was selected from an exceptional field of 305 entries from around the world to receive the 2016 award for his striking work titled Fusion Revisited. 

Previous winners include artists: Kendal Murray 2015, Mikala Dwyer 2014, Michael Sibel 2013, Lisa Roet 2012, Stephen Bird 2011, Robert Hague 2010 and Stephen Benwell 2009.

Small Sculpture Prize 2016
Deakin University Small Sculpture Award (installation view) 2016.

Still in progress...

13 April–27 May 2016

Still in progress... is an exhibition of work by current Deakin University PhD Students enrolled in the School of Communication and Creative Arts. It includes works by artists Sandra Minchin-Delohery, Todd Johnson, Kirsten Lyttle, Danielle McCarthy, Greg Penn, Ron Gallagher, Rachel Hanlon, Louise Morris, Ilona Jetmar, Alison Bennett, Keith MacDonald and Daniela Bertol.

Greg Penn - Free of Internal dialogue - 2016 - video still. Image courtesy of the artist.
Gregg Penn, Free of Internal Dialogue, 2016, video still. Image courtesy of the artist.

MYTHO-POETIC: Print and Assemblage Works by Glen Skien

24 February–31 March 2016

An exhibition of artist books, assemblages, collages and installations that bring to life social histories and questions of identity. The exhibition offers viewers an immersive experience rich in imagery that navigates residues of the past and creates new propositions for Australian identity and historical awareness.

MYTHO POETIC is organised by the Gympie Regional Gallery and toured by Museums & Galleries Queensland. It has been assisted by the Gordon Darling Foundation and the Australian Government through the Ministry for the Arts' Visions of Australia program.

Glen Skien Constellations I - detail 2013 collage - photo transfer and encaustic on paper - variable size.  Image courtesy of the artist and Museums - Galleries Queensland
Glen Skien, Constellations, 2013, collage, photo transfer and encaustic on paper, variable size. Image courtesy of the artist and Museums & Galleries Queensland.

Where are the Originals? Once were photographs… Peter Lyssiotis

28 October–11 December 2015

Where are the Originals? slows down the frantic pace of photography in the modern era, pausing for a breath in our rush to capture every moment by taking an over-the-shoulder look at photography and interrogating it. Amongst other things this exhibition posits the view that once an idea has been stretched, almost to breaking point, it will return inevitably to the original.

Lyssiotis' process of scratching, erasing, sanding and over drawing an existing image is a way of drawing those photographs, which have been made and already reproduced back to their essence… light. So that the immediacy of photography goes arm-in-arm with the meditative nature of drawing.

Based on two series of works, 'Men of Flowers' and '… & Now?' these works look at the challenge of making visible that which the initial photographer has not foreseen, revealing, in the process, what was hidden in the original, with a view, always, to reach for those unexpected levels of poetry (and perhaps humour).

Curated by Leanne Willis

Peter Lyssiotis and now III - detail - 2009 Deakin University Art Collection.
Peter Lyssiotis, … & now? III (detail), 2009, giclee print, Deakin University Art Collection. Photo: Simon Peter Fox.

George Gittoes: I Witness 

18 February–5 April 2015

George Gittoes: I Witness is the first major survey in Australia of the work of leading Australian artist and filmmaker George Gittoes. Gittoes is a nationally significant and internationally recognised Australian artist best known for creating works in regions of conflict and upheaval around the world including Rwanda, Bosnia, Afghanistan and Iraq. Known for working in areas of international conflict, here Gittoes sharpens his eye around the moral, ethical and spiritual dimensions of being human.

Curated for Hazelhurst Regional Gallery and Arts Centre by Rod Pattenden, George Gittoes: I Witness presents the major themes explored throughout Gittoes' 40 year career, with a diverse body of work that includes paintings, drawings, printmaking, artist diaries from the fields of war, installation and film.

It is drawn from the artist's and other private collections with many works never having been seen publicly in Australia.

A Hazelhurst Regional Gallery and Arts Centre touring exhibition.

George Gitttoes - Night Vision detail 1993-1994 - Photograph by Simon Peter Fox
George Gitttoes, Night Vision (detail), 1993–1994, oil on canvas. Photo: Simon Peter Fox.

Found in Translation: Deakin University Art Gallery

28 April–29 May 2015

Found in Translation: Deakin University Art Gallery is part of Gosia Wlodarczak's ongoing Instruction Drawing project. Taking a drawing produced during a residency at the Western Washington University Art Gallery in 2012 as her starting point, Wlodarczak has developed two pictorial alphabets, each letter of the English alphabet represented by a small detail of this drawing.

Using these pictorial alphabets, Wlodarczak has created a series of three site-specific wall drawings, each containing encoded texts. The first has been completed by the artist; the second, by Deakin University Art Gallery staff using a manual provided by the artist, 'Instruction for the Maker'; and the third will be a collaboration with visitors to the exhibition.

Texts selected by the artist and University staff, which relate to project and to the specific context of the University setting, are encoded within two of the drawings, which may be decoded using a set of instructions provided by the artist 'Instruction for the viewer'. Visitors to the exhibition are invited to contribute a word to the project, which the artist will translate into a third wall drawing during a four-day residency from 28 April to 1 May, culminating in a collaborative concrete poem.

Gosia Wlodarczak extends the practice of drawing in performative, interactive and conceptual projects that respond to her direct environment and explore the idea of drawing and language being coded modes of communication.

Gosia Wlodarczak DUST COVER EERO SAARINEN WOMB SOFA detail 2012 Performance with pigment marker_ acrylic_ stains and marks on canvas. Deakin University Art Collection.
Gosia Wlodarczak, Dust cover Eero Saarinen womb sofa, 2012, Performance with pigment marker, acrylic, stains and marks on canvas. Deakin University Art Collection. Photo: Longin Sarneci.

PDF Found in Translation -699.1KB


Sam Jinks

Until Friday, 24 February 2017

This was be a one-time-only opportunity to have a fascinating, intimate and up-close look into the extraordinary, hyper-real sculptures of this very talented Australian artist.

Silicon, artificial hair, real hair, textiles, 160.0 x 123.0 cm. Private collection Melbourne. Australia Image courtesy the artist and Sullivan and Strumpf