Herb Feith Memorial Lecture: Professor Adrian Vickers on Indonesian Art History

Professor Adrian Vickers (University of Sydney) will deliver the 2015 Herb Feith Memorial Lecture at Monash University on ‘The Problem with Indonesian Art History'.


Indonesian art history has an odd relationship with general history writing. Like mainstream history, narratives of art history serve nationalist purposes. Modernism in art is equated with nationalism in the official story of Indonesian art.

Like the major political narratives of history, however, the story of modern Indonesian art cannot adequately accommodate the events of 1965, and nor can it deal with the existence of parallel histories of regional art. An art history that begins with Bali provides alternative understandings of the modern, and the regional in Indonesia.

This alternative art history relocates Indonesian art in the global context, illuminates the roles of institutions in the production and commodification of art, and provides a new understanding of the contemporary in art.

Event details:

Date: 3 July 2015
Time: 6pm – 8.30pm
Venue: H116, Ground Floor, H Building, Monash University Caulfield campus

Register by 26 June 

Download the Seminar Flyer

About Professor Adrian Vickers

Professor Adrian Vickers holds a personal chair at the University of Sydney. His publications include Bali: A Paradise Created (1989, new edition 2013, previously translated into German, Dutch, Japanese and Indonesia); A History of Modern Indonesia (2004, new edition 2012, translated into Indonesian and Turkish);Balinese Art: Paintings and Drawing of Bali (2012), and, with Julia Martìnez, The Pearl Frontier: Labor Mobility across the Australian-Indonesian Maritime Zone, 1870-1970 (2015). He has held a series of Australian Research Council grants looking at Indonesian art, the Cold War, and labour and industry in Southeast Asia.

As part of an ARC Linkage Grant on the history of Balinese painting, he has prepared a virtual museum, continuing previous pioneering work in eResearch and teaching. He has been a Visiting Fellow at Magdalene College Cambridge and the Cambridge Joint Centre for History and Economics; Senior Visiting Fellow at the Asia Research Centre at the National University of Singapore; and a Visiting Fellow at the Royal Institute for Linguistics and Anthropology, Leiden. He has previously taught at the University of Wollongong and the University of New South Wales.

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