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Since the early 1990s, Queanbeyan-based artist, Barbara Campbell, has researched and developed projects in response to biographical material held in public institutions. In 2002, Campbell was the University of Melbourne's Macgeorge Fellow. Her research project, including the study of works held in the Sir Russell and Lady Grimwade Bequest, centred on the corporate and cultural activities of Russell Grimwade (1879–1955) and his relationship with the University of Melbourne. Among many various interests and entrepreneurial ventures, Grimwade was renowned for his passion for Australiana and native plants. Barbara Campbell's performance and two-part exhibition draws together related objects from the Grimwade Collection, including late nineteenth-century watercolours and Czechoslovakian glass paperweights, as well as specially crafted furniture made from various Eucalyptus species.
Campbell’s exhibition and performance examines from a metaphorical as well as a literal documentary perspective Grimwade’s fascination with the eucalypt. Challenging the seemingly arbitrary nature of scientific interpretation and human understanding, Campbell adopts her own unique tools of measurement and assessment, to create a human laboratory, with herself at the centre of the experiment.
Now open, The world is not a foreign land brings together work by Timothy Cook, Djambawa Marawili, Ngarra, Rusty Peters, Freda Warlapinni and Nyapanyapa Yunupingu. Crossing three geographically and culturally distinct regions—the Tiwi Islands, the Kimberley, and North-eastern Arnhem Land—each artist presents sometimes strikingly different perspectives on what constitutes Indigenous contemporary art.