Our interdisciplinary team provides strong applied research experience across visual art, cultural policy, economics and legal disciplines, complemented by industry leadership from arts advocacy and art gallery and museum management, and support from industrial organisations and arts funding bodies.
Grace McQuilten is Associate Professor in the School of Art at RMIT University. Her research explores art’s relationship to economic, social and political systems with a particular focus on artists’ critical engagement with markets and the development of new economic models in the arts. Grace's research also challenges and transforms conventional understandings of the relationship between margin and centre in relation to the cultural economy, contemporary art practice and art history. She has pioneered work on the field of art-based social enterprise in Australia and has worked extensively in migrant and refugee settlement.
Dr Marnie Badham. With a twenty-five-year history of art and social justice in Australia and Canada, Marnie's research sits at the intersection of socially-engaged art practice, participatory research methodologies and the politics of cultural measurement. Through aesthetic forms of encounter and exchange, her work brings together disparate groups of people in dialogue to examine and affect local issues. Her current focus includes a series of creative cartographies registering emotions in public space; expanded curation projects on the aesthetics and politics of food; and a book project The Social Life of Artist Residencies: connecting with people and place not your own.
Marnie is a Senior Research Fellow at the School of Art at RMIT University where her teaching focuses on expanded curation, relational ethics, and contemporary art and social practice.
Esther Anatolitis heads Test Pattern, a consultancy focused on creative strategy, practice and precincts. Across two decades Esther has led arts, design and media organisations with significant national impact, and has served numerous boards, advisories and policy committees, and was a founding director and Deputy Chair of Contemporary Arts Precincts, the organisation behind Collingwood Yards. Esther is Honorary Associate Professor at RMIT School of Art, has a long-term engagement with RMIT Architecture + Design as an external examiner and critic, and has taught and guest lectured at universities across Australia. Her academic background is in European philosophy, and she also holds the postgraduate Zertifikat BauhausDessau for her work on the international architectural project Serve City: Interactive Urbanism for which she was awarded a DAAD Künstlerprogramm residency. A prolific writer and influential advocate, Esther’s work regularly appears in literary journals, newspapers, and across the arts and design media. Her book Place, Practice, Politics (2022) is published in the Spurbuchverlag Art Architecture Design Research series.
Chloë Powell is a curator, creative producer, and researcher, working in the arts in Australia and internationally since 2008. Driven by facilitating projects that foster connection and have lasting impact on creative practice, Chloë has developed programs for artists and arts workers including co-founding Radiant Pavilion: Melbourne Contemporary Jewellery & Object Biennial. She has contributed to NGV Gallery magazine and Art Jewelry Forum, and assisted Dutch curator and art historian Liesbeth den Besten on her book On Jewellery: an International Compendium of Contemporary Art Jewellery (Arnoldsche 2011). Chloë is currently undertaking a PhD with the Australian National University.
Kate MacNeill is a Professor and Associate Dean, Education and Students in the Faculty of Arts, University of Melbourne. With a background in law and economics, and a PhD in Arts History she has extensive experience in policy work in the government and non-government sectors. Her research in the visual arts industry addresses the intersection between law and artistic practice (cultures of intellectual property and censorship), leadership in the arts and cultural sector and the politics of identity and representation. Kate’s track record includes a number of research projects and outputs with interdisciplinary teams and industry partners and users, specifically on gender, the ethics of creative practices, and visual art industry working conditions.
Associate Professor Jenny Lye is an economist with an extensive international publication record in theoretical and applied econometrics and statistics. Her applied econometrics work focuses on policy issues and recent industry research has analysed issues in tertiary education, gambling and alcohol and smoking. Jenny has supervised numerous PhD Candidates and research assistants and her research has strong industry uptake providing evidence for policymakers and translated to a general audience through mainstream media such as The Age.
Bev Munro is a Wiradjuri woman living on Bunurong land in the Bass Coast where she is engaged in community activities focussing on the environment, health, and local government. Bev’s past experience includes work in social, legal and health related roles in community and public sector organisations. Bev holds a Master’s in Public Health, a BSoc Sci and a Dip OHS, and is currently undertaking a PhD in cultural economics focussing on the Indigenous art market and its impact on Indigenous artists in the South-East of Australia. Bev’s PhD highlights the importance of creative cultural practice to the ongoing strength and resilience of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture in the southeast of Australia.
Sarah Gory is a writer, editor and researcher. She works collaboratively with individuals and organisations across the arts sector, with a particular interest in the intersection of creative and critical writing. Sarah has worked in leadership positions in the arts sector for the past two decades, most recently as Managing Editor for arts publisher un Projects. Sarah's creative and critical writing has been widely published in Australian journals, and she is currently a PhD candidate at the University of Melbourne. Sarah is also the co-founder, with Paul Mylecharane, of radical publishing collective Common Room Editions.
Rafaela Pandolfini is a photographer and artist who also works on curatorial projects. Rafaela's photography practice focuses on capturing movement, and since 2009 she has photographed in clubs and dance floors across Gadigal Land/Sydney. She continues to photograph dance and performance work for many artists and institutions. Rafaela has been organising independent curatorial projects since 2015 and in 2019 founded Suite 7a, a small independent arts organisation interested in alternate exhibition models and ways of organising. Rafaela is a Greens Councillor for Randwick, a PhD candidate with the Contemporary Art and Social Transformation (CAST) research group at RMIT University and holds an honorary position as an industry fellow at UTS Design Innovation Research Centre.
The National Association for the Visual Arts (NAVA) is the peak body representing the professional interests of the Australian visual arts, craft and design sector. Since its establishment in 1983, NAVA has been influential in bringing about policy and legislative change to encourage the growth and development of the visual arts and to increase professionalism within the industry. NAVA provides direct service to its Members and the sector by offering advice, resources, training and a range of other services.
Australian Museums and Galleries Association Incorporated (AMaGA) is the national association and peak advocacy body representing museums and galleries. They encompass a wide and diverse range of national, state, regional and community museums, galleries, historic sites, botanic and zoological gardens, research centres, Indigenous cultural centres, and Keeping Places across Australia. All of their members are, however, linked by a shared dedication to culture, the arts, movable cultural heritage and communities, and the knowledge that Australian cultural life is a dynamic ecosystem that generates creativity and innovation and contributes to the social and economic wellbeing of the country.