Contemporary Art and Feminism

Contemporary Art and Feminism (CAF) 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


Alison Clouston

Courtesy Alison Clouston

Future Feminist Archive, 4 - 28 March 2015

An exhibition and research initiative, Future Feminist Archive was launched with a talk by prominent Australian artist and SCA’s artist-in-residence Tracey Moffatt, and incorporated a a symposium on 6 March at the Art Gallery of NSW and artist talks with the artists in 'Daughters Mothers' at SCA Galleries on 7 March.

Alice Lang, Alice Lang Originals

Alice Lang, Alice Lang Originals, 2014. Courtesy the artist and Karen Woodbury Gallery

Curating Feminism conference, 23 – 25 October 2014

An international event co-hosted by Sydney College of the Arts, School of Letters, Arts and Media, and The Power Institute, the Curating Feminism conference and exhibition asked how curating can be an activist practice, especially in the realm of gender, what it means to be a feminist curator, or to adopt a feminist curatorial method, and how an emphasis on process, collaboration and negotiation helps us imagine feminist curating.

Transgressive Teaching symposium

Transgressive Teaching was a free workshop with leading feminist scholars and artists exploring how to teach feminism and how to teach in a feminist way held on Saturday 29 March 2014.


CAF steering committee

Jacqueline Millner (research cluster leader), Associate Dean (Research), Sydney College of the Arts
Catriona Moore, Senior Lecturer, School of Letters, Art and Media, University of Sydney
Jo Holder, Director, The Cross Art Projects
Elvis Richardson

Research assistant
Jane Polkinghorne (PhD candidate, Sydney College of the Arts)

Other links