Migration + Mobility + Art
Migration + Mobility + Art is an interdisciplinary research area within CAST, which examines various forms of migration and their critical impacts, and the challenges surrounding the complexities of mobility, with a particular focus on the Asia-Pacific region, in the context of creative practices.
Led by Associate Professor Kristen Sharp, Dr Tammy Hulbert, Dr Pia Johnson, and Dr Clare McCracken, this initiative brings together diverse researchers, including artists, curators, designers, writers and educators toshare and develop ideas, initiatives, collaboration projects, exhibitions and publication around interrelated issues of diversity, nationalism, citizenship, borders, transnationalism, multiculturalism, diasporas, globalisation and belonging.
As a research area, we want to examine how creative and cultural practices can reimagine the social, political, environmental and ethical issues of mobility and migration in a globalising society.
Research Theme Leaders
Dr Pia Johnson
Dr Pia Johnson is a photographer and visual artist, whose practice emerged out of concern with issues of cultural identity and difference, stemming from her mixed background of Chinese Italian-Australian descent. These themes have underpinned her interest in memory, cultural spaces and performance, to investigate notions of transcultural identity, belonging and otherness through photography. Her current research is interested in reading and performing Eurasian ethnicities, engaging with living archives, intersections with gender, and the commercial practice of photographing live performance.
Pia has exhibited in Australia and internationally and she has been a finalist in many photography awards including the Ravenswood Australian Women’s Art Prize, Josephine Ulrick and Win Schubert Photography Award, PCP’s Iris Award, Maggie Diaz Photography Prize for Women, Martin Kantor Photographic Portrait Prize. Her work is collected in private and public collections including the National Gallery of Victoria.
Pia holds a Bachelor of Creative Arts and Diploma of Modern Languages (Mandarin) from the University of Melbourne, and is currently a PhD (Art) candidate at RMIT University, where she also lecturers within the School of Fine Art.
Dr Tammy Hulbert
Dr Tammy Wong Hulbert is an artist, curator and academic. Her current research engages both her curatorial and artistic interests and focuses on investigating how socially engaged art practices can encourage an inclusive city. Originally she studied Bachelor of Applied Art, ceramics and Art Administration at UNSWAD, Sydney. She has exhibited her work and had curatorial experience in Melbourne, Sydney, Shanghai and Beijing. In Sydney, she was the manager of Newcontemporaries, a non-commercial corporate funded gallery and the manager of exhibitions at Customs House, City of Sydney. Her curatorial interests focus on cross-cultural dialogue between Australian and Chinese contemporary artists through projects such as Gone with the Panda – Zhao Bandi (2004) Meridians: Shanghai (2010) and Lumens Festival: Curating the Ancient City, Suzhou and Melbourne (2012). Her industry experience led to her PhD research on The City as a Curated Space (2012) at RMIT University, focused on proposing an alternative model of exhibition practices, considering the ways urban spaces are curated in global cities. She has also taught contemporary art history in Melbourne and Hong Kong. Tammy is currently a lecturer in the Arts Management program, specialising in curating contemporary art.
Associate Professor Kristen Sharp
Associate Professor Kristen Sharp is a researcher, writer and curator. She is the Associate Dean, Art at RMIT University. Her research focuses on contemporary art and urban space, contemporary Asian art, and collaborative art practices in transnational projects. Kristen's publications include Screen Ecologies: Art, Media and the Environment in the Asia-Pacific Region (with Hjorth, Pink and Williams, MIT Press, 2016), Re-imagining the City (co-edited with Grierson, Intellect, 2013) and Sounds of Weather (with Musashino Art University, Tokyo 2013). Kristen is a researcher, writer and curator of contemporary art. Her research interests include contemporary art and urban space, contemporary Asian art, and collaborative art practices in transnational projects. Kristen's publications include Screen Ecologies: Art, Media and the Environment in the Asia-Pacific Region (with Hjorth, Pink and Williams, MIT Press, 2016), Re-imagining the City (co-edited with Grierson, Intellect, 2013) and Sounds of Weather (with Musashino Art University, Tokyo 2013).
Dr Clare McCracken
Dr Clare McCracken is a site-responsive artist, early-career researcher and the coordinator of Art History, Theory & Cultures in the School of Art at RMIT University, Naarm/Melbourne. Her practice-led research sits at the intersection of art, cultural geography and urban theory. She employs innovative, performance methodologies to research how mobility systems coproduce space, place, and landscape across generations in Australia. In 2019 Clare won an RMIT University Research Award in the Higher Degree by research Impact category for her PhD research.
Clare has created over 30 temporary public artworks for sites across Melbourne, Hobart and Sydney including Federation Square and Cockatoo Island and exhibited locally and internationally. Over the last couple of years Clare has been shortlisted for the Nillumbik Art Prize, the Darebin Art Prize, the Wangaratta Contemporary Textile Award and the Hardie Grant Spark Prize for Narrative Nonfiction Writing. Her work is in private collections, the State Library of Victoria’s rare book collection, the Wangaratta Art Gallery, City of Hume and City of Greater Dandenong collections. Resent publications include Lisbon Dreaming (2023), Liminality When Grounded: micro-mobilities in contemporary art practice during the COVID-19 pandemic (2023) Killing Snowmen: big things and rural Australia’s existential crises (2022) and Dystopias for discourse: the role of the artist in a rapidly reconfiguring city (2021).
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