Melbourne Now countdown – day 40

The La Trobe University and NGV Melbourne Now Summer School is shaping up to be an immersive six day experience.

We have been working closely with Neil Fettling, Director of the La Trobe Art Institute and Vincent Alessi, Director of La Trobe University Museum of Art, to bring together the key themes of the exhibition and integrate this into the study requirements for an elective unit.

GP: How will students and participants in the Melbourne Now Summer School benefit from this course?

NF: Students and participants will gain great insights into the contemporary arts and culture in Melbourne.  They will be able to form great connections with the practitioners and achieve the benefits of real relationships with the cultural movers and shakers in Melbourne.  Many of the students will travel from regional centres, so it will enable networking and immersion in a major cultural capital with strong structured connections through the Summer School program.

GP: Why is the exhibition relevant to university students?

VA: Melbourne Now is a wonderful exhibition for university students, across disciplines, to engage with the diversity of contemporary practice and thinking across the visual arts and design. While being a celebration of what is happening now in the cultural space in Melbourne, the exhibition provides extensive examples of how Australian artists and designers work in an international context; that although Australian’s may be geographically distant, the work we produce is not done so in a vacuum, a valuable lesson for all university students.  The exhibition also demonstrates the diversity of media and approaches in contemporary art practice: from painting to installation, to architectural interventions and design. This diversity will enlighten and also inspire and motivate students to continue to explore and push the boundaries of their own practice and thinking.  It will also illustrate how art and design can be engaged with the big issues of our time, and how it is an important voice in local, national and international debates; that art and design is an important mechanism in understanding who we are and in contributing to a more cohesive, functioning and rich society. Finally, Melbourne Now is a great opportunity for university students to see how robust, engaging and vibrant Melbourne is and how as students they can also play in role in creating the cultural aspect of this city in which we live.