Articles on Art

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‘Maus’ and ‘Watchmen’ are two of the most well-known graphic novels. Ken Whytock/flickr

How the graphic novel got its misleading moniker

The graphic novel has become a literary phenomenon, but the name doesn't adequately describe the medium's flexibility, diversity and potential.
Berger considered how through history and visual representation the male gaze has constrained women. John Berger's Ways of Seeing

How John Berger changed our way of seeing art

The Marxist philosopher, art critic and novelist popularised complex ideas and helped bring art into the mainstream.
Third-year archaeology student Dominic Coe replicates a painting of rhino based on the original image in France’s Grotte Chauvet. Supplied

Why we built an artificial cave to teach our students about ancient art

In an ideal world, students might visit original cave sites to see ancient paintings in their natural setting. This isn't possible, so the idea of an artificial cave set-up at a university was born.
Anne and Gordon Samstag dancing at home, Naples, Florida, USA, c1986. Photograph courtesy of Mrs Florence (Robbie) McBryde.

The Samstags: the untold story of a couple that changed Australian art

Many leading Australian artists have benefitted from a Samstag scholarship. But who were the Samstags and what motivated them to create this legacy?
Students ponder the meaning of Jinamoom by Peggy Griffiths at the Ian Potter Museum of Art. Jodie Hutchinson/Ian Potter Museum

Friday essay: can looking at art make for better doctors?

Can empathy be taught to students in the healthcare professions? A groundbreaking project is using visual art to ensure they pay attention to the whole person, not just the disease.
Detail from Shenae & Jade, 2005, Petrina Hicks. Courtesy of the artist and THIS IS NO FANTASY + dianne tanzer gallery, Melbourne and Michael Reid, Sydney

Wings of desire, demise and adaptation: birds in Australian art

A new exhibition exploring the relationship between birds and humans is variously gaudy, delightful and disturbing. We sent two ecologists along to review the show.
The mitotic spindle inside a living cell, magnified x 80,000, captured by biomedical animator Drew Berry. Drew Barry/Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts

Of microbes and machines: how art and science fuse in Bio-art

When art meets the biological sciences, living matter becomes the medium. From the chaotic beauty of smallpox to poems implanted in bacteria, Bio-art investigates the boundaries of life and death.
Louise Bourgeois’s. Arched figure 1993: powerful and unforgettable. Art Gallery of New South Wales Foundation Purchase 2016 © The Easton Foundation.

Review: The naked nude from the Tate

The Art Gallery of NSW's summer blockbuster sparkles with famous names, including Picasso, Matisse, Turner and Rodin. But for all of its trumpeting of risk and daring, it remains essentially a rather puritanical exercise.

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