ACU Art Collection - A new perspective

ACU is delighted to announce the publication of ACU Art Collection: A new perspective, comprising highlights from the university’s art collection revealed through essays by renowned art historians, religious commentators, curators, art writers and critical thinkers.

This richly illustrated publication presents a range of artworks in diverse mediums, from early medieval sculpture, stained glass and textiles, through to works in oil, acrylic, print, ceramics and, most recently, 21st-century glass. The international and Australian artists represented include Taddeo di Bartolo, Justin O’Brien, Arthur Boyd, Angelina Pwerle, Pippin Drysdale and Helen Johnson.

It is anticipated that A new perspective will make a significant contribution to the appreciation of art while providing a greater awareness of the diversity of the ACU Art Collection.

ACU Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Greg Craven AO, GCSG, notes: “Collecting, commissioning and displaying art is a central cultural function of all universities. But it is of particular importance to a Catholic university ... [as] one of the chief means by which we see the reflected glory of God, through the genius and sensitivities of his creatures in his creation ... Of course, not all art in a Catholic university will be on a specifically religious theme, and such is the case with our own university collection. But any art that inspires and excites can only draw us further into the mystery of what it is to be an intrinsically valuable creation of that greatest artist of all.”

Historian Margaret Pont adds, “The importance of classifying and recording what had previously been a rather random collection of religious, historical and contemporary works cannot be overstated. This publication will allow visual access and documentation to students, artists, academics and the public.”

A new perspective celebrates the development of the ACU Art Collection and its exciting new direction since inaugural curator Caroline Field joined the university in 2016. The entire collection has now been catalogued and is accessible via ACU’s Arts and Culture website, eHive Collection Management System, and the Australian online database: Trove.

Contributors to A new perspective include Hon John Fahey AC, GCSG, Professor Greg Craven AO, GCSG, Professor Zlatko Skrbis, Most Rev Anthony Fisher OP, Professor Anne Dunlop, Dr Ursula Betka, Anne Marie Brody, Dr Felicity Harley, Associate Professor Alison Inglis, Simone Chetcuti, Fr Anthony Casamento CSMA, Dr Hilary Maddocks, Dr Louise Marshall, Dr Christine Nicholls, Damien Freeman, Alasdair Macintyre and Victoria Perin. Each of their essays focuses on one or two works of art and invites the reader to look more closely and gain a new perspective.

About A new perspective 

A New Perspective book

Published by Australian Catholic University (ACU), 2020, Hardcover + case, pp. 120, 66 colour illustrations.
Managing editor: Caroline Field, Curator, ACU Art Collection

RRP $49.99 (P&P $15 within Australia)

ISBN: 978-1-922097-86-6

Available from the gifts section of ACU's Arts and Culture website. Or you can contact Philippa Murdoch on 03 9953 3516 or via


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