An alphabetised index of key words relating to a specific subject or theme; in this case the exhibition Infrastructuralism at La Trobe Art Institute, 6 Feb – 17 March, 2018


The writer of a text; Sophia Cai


Agatha Gothe-Snape

Sydney-based artist who is interested in artistic processes and how context influences the understanding of art and culture. (see Communication)



That which artists make.


Art Speak

Also known as International Art English. Describes the language used by the international art community and seen in catalogue essays, press releases and artist statements etc. Often uses pretend words (see Infrastructuralism)



A person who makes art.





Carolyn Eskdale

Artist known for creating installations that explore the idea of rooms and interior spaces, and how we perceive space. (see Everyday)



The one thing that artists and corporate workers share in common.


Commercial gallery

A commercial gallery describes a for-profit gallery space where artworks are exhibited and sold. Commercial galleries also often represent artists exclusively, meaning they provide opportunities for those artists to exhibit at the gallery regularly.



Ways of sending and receiving information by speaking, writing or other forms. Communication methods can include email, letter, dialogue, phone etc.





Conceptual Art

Art where the idea is more important than the finished work. Conceptual art can look like anything, and be made of anything. Also the reason why contemporary art gets a bad rep.



A vocation and profession; traditionally a curator was employed by a museum or gallery responsible for overseeing and interpreting a collection; increasingly nowadays a curator is a creative enterprise and describe those who make and develop exhibitions – whether attached to an institution or working independently. Not all who study curatorship become curators, just as not all curators have studied curatorship.

Not to be confused with the words ‘to select’ – as in ‘curated luxury goods’ or ‘curated coffee experiences’.


Dimensions variable

Often used in Art Speak to refer to artworks when the size is dependent on context and display. This often refers to installation or durational works, in contrast to traditional art forms with a static size (e.g. painting, sculpture).

In some cases, this term is also applied when the artist and/or curator does not know the exact dimensions of the work.



Daily occurrences and happenings. Also an endless source of artistic inspiration for artists throughout history.


Helen Grogan

Artist interested in the intersection between art and choreography, using the gallery space as a context for performance. See Performance Art.


Group exhibition

An exhibition featuring the works of three or more artists. Together, group exhibitions tend to explore a common theme or aesthetic.



A Swedish-founded-Dutch-based company that produces and sells ready-to-assemble, affordable furniture. It has over 400 stores in the world. Ubiquitous with student housing, model display apartments, and a recent exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria with Yayoi Kusama.



A group exhibition curated by Dr Kent Wilson with 5 Australian artists whose works react to the physical context and space of the gallery space. Not to be confused with Infrastructure



Describes the physical and operational structures that are required for the function of a particular enterprise.



An organisation founded on social, political, educational, religious or cultural purposes (e.g. La Trobe Art Institute). Can also be used to denote existing laws, customs or practices that are carried out.


Institutional critique

A critical inquiry into the systems that define art institution, including but not limited to its operation, processes, and language (see Art Speak, see ­White Cube). For artists working in this theme, this often involves making art that challenges and critiques the very structure in which their art is presented. (See Agatha Gothe-Snape, Carolyn Eskdale, Helen Grogan, Jessie Bullivant and Shannon Lyons).


Jessie Bullivant

Melbourne-based artist who is interested in power, society, and how this is expressed in different contexts. In this exhibition in particular, Bullivant’s work explores the modern family unit and how it may relate to the art institution. See Work/Life Balance


La Trobe Art Institute

The art gallery of La Trobe University, located in the city of Bendigo. Self described as ‘an ambitious vision, an aspiration institutional looking towards a redefinition of the role of the university art museum in the 21st century.’ Venue of the Infrastructuralism exhibition.


Performance Art

Refers to artworks that are made through actions performed by the artist or others. Can be spontaneous, pre-determined, live or recorded.


Salon Hang

Derived from the word ‘Salon’, which described by mass exhibitions held by the French Royal Academy in the 18th Century, today the ‘Salon Hang’ refers to a method of hanging artworks in close clusters to fill up a wall. Still employed by contemporary artists as a conceptual strategy.


Shannon Lyons

Artist who is very generously providing us with free drinks during the exhibition. (See Coffee, IKEA)


The Body

To be differentiated from the singular word ‘body’, ‘the body’ in art describes a long-tradition of artists who use the body and its depiction in art to explore a wide range of themes and issues. More recently with the rise of performance art, the body has also been used by artist’s as the medium itself through choreographed actions and events. (See Performance Art)


White Cube

Defined in 1976 by critic Brian O’Doherty, this phrase describes a mode of display that situates individual works of art against white walls in sparse gallery settings. The white walls were thought to act like a frame, to elevate the status of the art object on display. This aesthetic became increasingly popular in the twentieth century in the Western art world with the introduction of abstract and modern art (see Salon hang). Today, we may consider this to be the default mode for display in art museums and galleries. Also the name of a successful gallery in London (see Commercial gallery)


Work/Life Balance

The division of time between leisure activities and employment (paid or otherwise). The aspirational goals of many contemporary artists, working in a volatile economic environment where the production of art work is not valued in itself.



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