Just over six weeks ago, our Faculty hosted IMPACT7, an international interdisciplinary Printmaking Conference. This event provided an international meeting point for people working in the broad fields of print-related research. The conference originates from the University of Western England in Bristol, United Kingdom, and the first conference was held there in 1999. As Convener of the conference, I worked with IMPACT7 Project Manager Ruth Bain and a wonderful Steering Committee drawn from my colleagues across the Faculty. We were thrilled to host just over four hundred people from around the globe, who presented exciting print based exhibitions fascinating papers on all aspects of print, and printmaking demonstrations. The conference proceedings will be published by the end of the year, and the website is a permanent valuable record of this research.

In our Faculty, we are interested in theory and practice-led research, positioning art practice within the discourse of research. The artist is considered as theorist in this model, as both researcher and researched, and the imaginative inquiry that is visual arts practice is understood to contribute to our understanding of the world, to knowledge. The IMPACT7 conference delegates―artists, curators, gallerists, writers, theorists, historians, collectors, students―demonstrated this type of critical inquiry, and, this, in its turn, demonstrated the incredible liveliness of print culture globally and in Australia.

This generosity and liveliness is alive and well in the Printmedia Studio. Our staff members Rosalind Atkins, Rebecca Mayo and Trent Walter have contributed immeasurably to the vitality of our studio and to this sense of generous collaboration. The strength of their visual arts research contributes richly to the culture of our printmedia department. My thanks also to Antonietta Covino-Beehre for her unflinching technical support for each and every student’s project.

This year’s students are presenting their well-researched works in this exhibition. Their projects are inventive and playful, somber and considered. They also have wonderful practical skills in printmedia processes and in a variety of other skills—from sculptural constructions to printing hand-set type in that slowest of all processes, letterpress. They have worked together, and known each other well over the last three years, establishing a solid ground for life-long friendships and professional networks.

It has been a privilege to work with and get to know these young artists, and I wish them the very best in all of their future endeavours.

Marian Crawford

Studio Coordinator