Grace McQuilten is a Senior Lecturer in Art History and Theory, and Leader of the Contemporary Art and Social Transformation Research Group in the School of Art.
Grace is a published art historian, curator and artist with expertise in contemporary art and design, public art, social practice, social enterprise and community development.
Grace's book Art as Enterprise: Social and Economic Engagement in Contemporary Art is published by IB Tauris (UK) (2016, co-authored with Dr Anthony White) considers new economic models for the arts in the context of social practice, creative industries and transformations in the public realm. In 2011 she published Art in Consumer Culture with Ashgate Publishing, looking at the work of contemporary international artists engaging critically with design.
Grace's research 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. She has a multidisciplinary approach that engages with a range of fields including art, design, architecture, sustainability, sociology, business and international development. In addition, through her leadership of the CAST research group, she collaborates with industry and across disciplines to develop research projects that address issues of access, equity and justice.
Grace is a Chief Investigator on the ARC Discovery Project 'The underworld: outsider artists and the reformulation of Australian art,' (2018-2020) and the ARC Discovery Project 'Art-based Social Enterprises and Marginalised Young Peoples Transitions,' (2017-2019). She has published numerous articles in refereed and unrefereed publications, published creative works in literary journals, authored exhibition catalogues and worked as an editor on local newspapers and engaged widely with local and national media. Grace is the founding CEO & a current Board Director of The Social Studio, a fashion and art based social enterprise working with young people from humanitarian migrant backgrounds in Melbourne.
Modern and contemporary art, art history, intersection of art and design, art and community development, art and politics, social enterprise.
- Bachelor of Creative Arts (Honours), University of Melbourne
- PhD Art History, University of Melbourne
- McQuilten, G.,Spiers, A. (2021). Joining my Future: Art, Work, Inequality and Crisis In: Bus Projects Melbourne, Australia
- McQuilten, G.,Warr, D.,Humphery, K.,Spiers, A. (2020). Ambivalent entrepreneurs: arts-based social enterprise in a neoliberal world In: Social Enterprise Journal, 16, 121 - 140
- McQuilten, G.,Spiers, A. (2020). ‘Art is different’: Material practice, learning and co-making at The Social Studio In: Journal of Arts and Communities, 10, 19 - 33
- McQuilten, G. (2020). Who is afraid of public space? Public art in a contested, secured and surveilled city In: Art & the Public Sphere, 8, 235 - 254
- McQuilten, G. (2020). Dignity and Futility: Art and Labour in a Post-Industrial World In: Australian and New Zealand Journal of Art, 20, 213 - 230
- Hulbert, T.,McQuilten, G.,Rayment, H.,Nguyen, H.,Ngoc, L. (2020). Skilled Hands, Shared Culture In: RMIT Gallery Melbourne, Australia
- McQuilten, G. (2019). The Social Studio 10 Year Retrospective In: The Social Studio 10 Year Retrospective Melbourne
- McQuilten, G. (2019). Pan African Space Station In: Shapes of Knowledge Melbourne
- White, A.,McQuilten, G.,Parlane, A.,Green, C. (2019). Outsider Art in Australia: Artists’ Voices Versus Art-world Mythologies In: Art and Australia, 56, 1 - 10
- McQuilten, G. (2018). Five pages of writing about artists' writings In: Writing + Concepts 2016, Art + Australia, Melbourne, Australia
10 PhD Current Supervisions3 PhD Completions
- The Platform: Emerging Artists Take Over. Funded by: City of Melbourne Arts Grant from (2022 to 2022)
- Ambitious and Fair: Strategies for a sustainable visual arts sector. Funded by: ARC Linkage Project Grants 2020 from (2021 to 2023)
- Joining my future - Art, Work, Inequality and Crisis. Funded by: Australia Council for the Arts Research Grant from (2020 to 2020)
- The Social Fabric Youth Development Program. Funded by: Multicultural Affairs and Citizenship Program – Fostering Integration Grants from (2019 to 2020)
- The underworld: outsider artists and the reformulation of Australian art (administered by University of Melbourne). Funded by: ARC Discovery Project via Other University from (2018 to 2022)