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Alumni in the ANU Art Collection: Chris Carmody

The Art Collection fills an important role of enriching the creative, cultural and intellectual lives of students and staff on the ANU campus. First established in 1949, it comprises over 2900 paintings, drawings, sculptures, limited editions prints and photographs, ceramics and glass objects by significant artists.

Alumni students and staff from the ANU School of Art and Design (previously Canberra School of Art and ANU School of Art) are numerously represented in the collection through purchases, generous donations by artists and patrons, and through the School of Art and Design’s Emerging Artists Support Scheme. In this series of posts, we introduce a selection of alumni artists and their works in the collection and give a brief insight into their lives and art practices.

Christopher Carmody completed a Bachelor of Art History and Curatorship in 2008 and a Bachelor of Visual Arts (Honours 1st class) majoring in Painting in 2009.

We invited Christopher to provide some insight into his works in the collection, his experience of studying at the ANU and a little about his creative life since graduating:

This painting (745.10994 BAG) is one of about fifty Cover Paintings I’ve made since 2009, these works are based on book covers that have faded. The title of this one is 745.10994 BAG, which refers to the library call number of a book held in the ANU School of Art and Design Library, where it has sat balanced next to various other books and gradually faded and buckled. What I’ve painted is essentially layers of interrelated information: colour, edge, shape, design, texture, text, tape, labels, ridges and corrugations, reflection, shadow, wear and tension. I enjoy reassembling these things in paint. Sometimes the book’s subject seems to relate to the fading, but I use the call number as a title because it very neatly gives you both the option to set aside the book whilst also enabling you to actually find it or another copy and see for yourself.

My connection to the ANU began in 2003 when I visited the School of Art Open day and I liked what I saw. I studied Painting and Art History at ANU and was employed by ANU Library for several years. It makes me happy that this painting has a home so near to its book. (This painting is currently hanging in the School of Art and Design Gallery and Outreach office)

My recent paintings respond to things I saw while living in Yuendumu, in the Northern Territory.

For more information on Christopher Carmody:


Instagram:  @general_interest

The Drill Hall Gallery acknowledges the Ngunnawal and Ngambri peoples, the traditional custodians of the Canberra region, and recognises their continuous connection to culture, community and Country.