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As part of the 700s Arts Festival, Against the Grain will enable students to enjoy being surrounded by works from both modern and contemporary Australian and international artists.
A defiant protest against oppression, issues of social justice, environmentalism and power, and displacement and identity as seen through the lens of art. These are the subjects explored in Against the Grain, a pop up exhibition of works from the RMIT University Art Collection, curated as part of RMIT Library’s 700s Festival.
According to the exhibition curator, RMIT Gallery Collections Coordinator Jon Buckingham, "art is a tool for understanding the problems of society. While we might wish it could, art cannot change the world. What it can do is help us realise that change is possible."
From August 13-25 September, Swanston Library will host exhibitions, talks and a series of workshops to celebrate RMITs arts book, journal and DVD collection. This collection is classified within the 700s of the Dewey Decimal System. Swanston Library’s “700s” are recognised for their strength, diversity and as an inspirational browsing collection. They are now the largest collection held on-site at Swanston Library.
A section of space in the RMIT Swanston Street library's former shelving area has been transformed by RMIT Gallery into an exhibition and reading space, allowing students to enjoy works from the extensive RMIT University Art Collection by artists including John Brack, Noel Counihan, Jazmina Cininas, Juan Ford, Maria Kozic, Trevor Nickolls, Polixeni Papapetrou and Antoni Tápies.
As part of the Festival, books from the 700s section that relate to the artists and works will be available to browse through, illustrating the abiding connection between the Library and Gallery collections. Many of the works on display are by RMIT staff and alumni, and the University’s ongoing commitment to Australia’s cultural history.
"It is always good to see the University's Art Collection, and the 700s Arts festival is a rare and wonderful opportunity for us to display some of the 2000 works RMIT holds," Mr Buckingham said.