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What’s the Matter?: The Object in Australian Art History
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for Fashion Studies. (Centre for Fashion Studies)
2011 (English)In: Journal of Art Historiography, ISSN 24752, no 4/June, 1-19 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The place from which designs originate renders them distinctive and connected to the global and the local in specific ways. This paper outlines a series of historiographical issues that inflect the study of objects within Australian art history, firstly for the nineteenth century and then, more briefly, for the twentieth. In twentieth-century Australia, architects were prominent in analysing and popularising aspects of both the built environment and decorative arts which elsewhere might have been explored by art historians. Architects sometimes held academic posts that provided opportunities for research, they held strong views regarding urban planning and the built environment, and before the profession of heritage consultant arose, they were often required to research sites and take restoration decisions. This paper also considers the significant role of the collector and the rise of this activity from the 1920s to the 1970s, firstly by individuals, later by museums. The priorities of connoisseurship and a nostalgic evocation of colonial history dominated the inter-war period in Australia, resulting in a significant body of largely expository and romanticised writing. Such writing was nonetheless important in raising awareness, changing attitudes and tastes, and documenting survivals.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Birmingham: Barber/Art History University of Birmingham , 2011. no 4/June, 1-19 p.
Keyword [en]
historiography, material culture, history of collecting, national collections
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-71532OAI: diva2:485189
Available from: 2012-01-28 Created: 2012-01-28 Last updated: 2012-03-30Bibliographically approved

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