Professor Virginia Spate

BA Melbourne
MA Cambridge
PhD Bryn Mawr College


Research Interests

  • Art, nature, the body and the natural sciences in 19th century French art
  • The Aboriginal Memorial, Canberra
  • The representation of the body in 18th and 19th century French art
  • Cézanne's Bathers
  • Abstraction in early 20th century French art
  • Australian landscape painting


  • [Edited] 2001, Monet and Japan, exhibition catalogue, National Gallery of Art, Canberra, including major article, 'A new and strange beauty. Monet and Japanese art' (with David Bromfield)
  • [Authored] 2001 The Colour of Time. Claude Monet (1992), paperback edition, London, New York, Paris (Mitchell Prize for the best book in art history published in English in 1992)
  • [Authored] 2000, Degas: Life and works, London 2000; trans. Degas, Sa vie, son oeuvre, Paris (trans. into Hungarian 2002) (a small popular book)
  • [Chapters] 1997 'Mother and son. Boccioni's painting and sculpture 1906-16', ed. Terry Smith in In Visible Touch, Power Publications, Sydney and Chicago University Press, Chicago Catalogue Essays
  • [Chapters] 1999, 'If these dead stones could speak. Rayner Hoff's sculptures and the Anzac Memorial', in This Vital flesh: The Sculpture of Rayner Hoff and his School, Art Gallery of New South Wales
  • [Chapters] 1998, 'Nature and Artifice. Emmanuel Phillips Fox, Bathing hour', eds, Lynne Seear and Julie Ewington, Brought to Light: Australian Art from the Queensland Art Gallery Collection 1850-1965, Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane
  • [Chapters] 1995, 'Where the Sun never set: Tom Roberts and the British Empire', in Tom Roberts, Art Gallery of South Australia and Art Exhibitions
  • [Essay] 2001, 'The Dazzle of the great Turner in their eyes. Turner, Monet and Pissarro' (forthcoming: proceedings of a symposium held in September 2001 in connection with a major exhibition of the Turner's work, organised by the Museum Folkwang, Essen; published in Best Australian Essays 2001, ed. Peter Craven