Research activity per year

Personal profile


Tara McDowell is Associate Professor and Director of Curatorial Practice at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. Her research interests include contemporary curating, exhibition histories, art institutions, feminist and queer spaces of sociability and production, and the various support structures of art, including home, school, exhibition, labour, and friendshipRecent curatorial projects include the experimental symposium Shapeshifters: New Forms of Curatorial Research (2019); John Baldessari: Wall Painting (2017 and 2019); 124,908, for the 2nd Tbilisi Triennial, Georgia (2015); Nothing Beside Remains (2014); and The Land Grant: Flatbread Society with Amy Franceschini (2014). She publishes and lectures frequently, and her writing has appeared in art-agendaartforum.comArtlink, Discipline, Filip, The Lifted Brow, Memo Review, The Miami Rail, Mousse, un Magazine, and The Exhibitionista journal on curatorial practice for which she was Founding Senior Editor. She has written exhibition catalogue essays on Zarouhie Abdalian, Sarah Cain, Barbara Cleveland, Fiona Connor, Wangechi Mutu, David Park, Jahnne Pasco-White, and Richard Tuttle, among many others. McDowell has held curatorial appointments at the CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts in San Francisco, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, where she mounted many solo and group exhibitions, including projects on Minimalism, Fluxus, assemblage, and avant-garde cinema. McDowell holds a PhD in the History of Art from the University of California, Berkeley. Her recent books include The Artist As (Sternberg Press, 2018) and The Householders: Robert Duncan and Jess (The MIT Press, 2019), which argued for domestic space as a site of creative production in the work of the artist Jess and poet Robert Duncan. The book was awarded the 2018 CAA Millard Meiss Publication Fund Award; was a 2020 nominee for the Charles C. Eldredge Prize for outstanding scholarship in the field of American artSmithsonian American Art Museum; and was reviewed in seven national and international publications, including BookforumThe Gay & Lesbian Review, and The New York Review of Books.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action

Education/Academic qualification

Art History, PhD, University of California Berkeley

Award Date: 31 May 2013

Research area keywords

  • Curatorial practice
  • Contemporary Art History & Art Theory
  • Social Justice
  • climate change
  • Feminism

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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