THE UNSW GALLERIES, COFA
The new UNSW Galleries, COFA are due for completion in autumn 2013.
They will be highly specialised exhibition spaces able to present the latest art, design and media technologies in a fully integrated way. The nature of these spaces has evolved in response to the needs of COFA, taking into account: the overall budget for the project; the parameters of existing buildings on site; and the need to maximise the provision of learning & teaching studios and facilities.
The new UNSW Galleries, COFA are a major Australasian cultural and educational resource, presenting innovative contemporary art in an independent environment. They will operate as research-based spaces for showcasing developments in contemporary art and design, hosting rigorously curated national and international exhibitions in purpose-built galleries on Oxford Street, Paddington.
The new galleries will be committed to the presentation of curated exhibitions and other art projects – such as public art, performance and temporary events – the generation of original and innovative curatorial research, public programs and the publication of scholarly books and catalogues. All projects will be supported by the teaching and research programs of COFA, UNSW and its partner institutions across Australia and Asia. The new galleries will also provide a training ground for emerging curators enrolled in COFA’s world-renowned Master of Art Administration degree.
With a focus on art and design of the Australasian region, the new UNSW Galleries, COFA provide a high-profile and publicly accessible forum for research and experimentation. In 2012 COFA established Indigenous Connections and Asian Connections, nurturing cultural development and exchanges in the Australasian region. A number of initiatives including exhibitions and residencies are already underway, supporting research led by COFA’s National Institute for Experimental Arts. Recent and current projects to be featured in the galleries include “Measuring Asian Art’s contribution to Australian Culture”, a major ARC-funded project awarded to COFA in partnership with 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and the Zendai Museum of Modern Art in Shanghai (2006-10); and “Making Change”, an exhibition exchange of contemporary Indigenous and Chinese art, presented in partnership with the Australian Centre for Photography, Sydney and the National Museum of China, Beijing (2012-13).
With a combined exhibiting space of around 800 square metres, the new UNSW Galleries, COFA will join the Art Gallery of New South Wales and Museum of Contemporary Art Australia as a significant public gallery in Sydney. The new galleries will enhance COFA’s position as a leading art and design faculty in the Australasian region, supporting inquiry and discovery across the disciplines of visual art, design and new media.