The US Studies Centre joined with the Art Gallery of New South Wales to mount an international symposium on the Gallery's American art collections of the 60s and 70s. This period of radical experiment gave rise to many practices and aesthetics underpinning contemporary art. Enriched by the John Kaldor gift of 2009, the Gallery boasts the world’s finest museum collection of Sol Lewitt. Major pieces by Lewitt, Carl Andre, Christo, Donald Judd, Edward Ruscha, Richard Serra, Frank Stella and Laurence Weiner were on display during the symposium.
Three leading American experts, Alexander Alberro (Columbia), Charles W. Haxthausen (Williams) and Robert Slifkin (NYU) travelled to Sydney for the event. They were joined by Australian scholars including Sue Best, Keith Broadfoot, Rachel Kent, Chris McAuliffe, Meredith Morse, and Ann Stephen. Convened for the US Studies Centre by Professor Roger Benjamin, the symposium threw new light on Australian responses to American art.
This was the second of two symposia funded by the Terra Foundation for American Art (the Abstract Expressionist holdings of the NGA were the subject in 2012).