• Class Number 7402
  • Term Code 3160
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Dr Sarah Scott
    • Dr Sarah Scott
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 26/07/2021
  • Class End Date 29/10/2021
  • Census Date 14/09/2021
  • Last Date to Enrol 02/08/2021
    • Lara Nicholls
SELT Survey Results

Across the Pacific: Australian Interactions with American Art and Art-Worlds will provide an introduction to Australia's engagement with American Art with a particular focus on exhibition history within the two countries. Through the provision of theoretical, social, political and historical contexts the course will include an introduction to key art theorists such as Clement Greenberg, Harold Rosenberg, Sol Lewitt, Rosalind Krauss, Ian Burn and others whose ideas had an impact on Australian artists. Topics may include: Two Decades of American Painting (1967) The Field exhibition and its legacy (1968) and Kaldor Art Projects (1969 onwards). The political context for these exhibitions will also be discussed, particularly in relation to the purchase of Blue Poles by the NGA in 1973 and the promotion of American art internationally during the Cold War period. Through an examination of the relationship between exhibitions and theory, the second part of the course will focus upon developments in performance art, womens art, conceptual art and environmental art. The course will provide a vital introduction to American-Australian art and theory from the 1940's onwards.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. find, identify and analyse different artworks and exhibitions related to the interaction between Australian and American art from 1941 onwards;
  2. utilise appropriate primary and secondary sources to craft scholarly arguments;
  3. demonstrate a firm understanding of the cultural, political, historical and theoretical contexts informing the production of Australian art influenced by American art and theory; and
  4. write and talk critically about the relationship between American and Australian art with a focus upon exhibition history.

Research-Led Teaching

The course builds upon the research areas of Australian exhibition history and Australian First Nations art and culture including the discussion of exhibitions in Australia and America.

Field Trips

Students will be required to visit the cultural institutions in Canberra.

Additional Course Costs


Examination Material or equipment


Required Resources

Wattle website and relevant readings.

Please see Wattle for further information

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written comments
  • verbal comments

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Australian-American interaction in art an introduction Tutorial Presentation (8 minutes)
2 Two Decades of American Painting and the Cold War Tutorial Presentation (8 minutes)
3 The Field (1968) and Formalism Tutorial Presentation (8 minutes)
4 Abstraction in the late 1960s and Australian artists in America
5 Art and Politics: The Purchase of Blue Poles and the reception of Jackson Pollock in Australia by artists Tutorial Presentation (8 minutes)
6 Australian First Nations art in America Tutorial Presentation (8 minutes)
7 Opening up to America and the world: The Sydney Biennale and Kaldor Art Projects Tutorial Presentation (8 minutes)
8 Conceptual art Tutorial Presentation (8 minutes) Visual Analysis Due 1500 words
9 The rise and rise of Women's Art and Artists Tutorial Presentation (8 minutes)
10 Environmental Art: Mildura Sculpture Triennial and beyond Tutorial Presentation (8 minutes)
11 Performance Art: Mildura Sculpture Triennial and beyond Tutorial Presentation (8 minutes)
12 Review. Extended Research Essay Due 2500 words

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Learning Outcomes
Participation 10% 10 % 1,2,3,4
Tutorial Presentation, 8 minutes, 20% 20 % 1,2,3,4
Visual analysis drawing upon a theoretical approach, 1500 words, 30% 30 % 1,3,4
Extended Research Essay, 2500 words, 40% 40 % 1,2,3,4

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the Academic Integrity . In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.





Assessment Task 1

Value: 10 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Participation 10%

Participation will include ongoing contribution to tutorials and online discussions with weekly posts in the discussion forum. Students will be expected to complete set readings for each week in preparation for tutorial discussions and set tutorial questions.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 20 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Tutorial Presentation, 8 minutes, 20%

Based on research that you have undertaken concerning your chosen topic develop an 8 minute (approx 1000 word) presentation which addresses the selected topic. Prepare a powerpoint to go with the presentation complete with appropriately captioned images (see guide). Include 2-8 images. Do not over rely on a script and think about how to make the presentation engaging for the group. Present questions to stimulate participation of the group. An 8 minute time limit will be strictly enforced.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 30 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,3,4

Visual analysis drawing upon a theoretical approach, 1500 words, 30%

Identify, discuss and analyze a chosen artwork utilizing ONE of the approaches considered in the course in relation to the cultural exchange between Australian and American art and art-worlds.

Assessment Task 4

Value: 40 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Extended Research Essay, 2500 words, 40%

Choose one of the following questions as a basis for your research OR discuss an alternative topic with the convenor.

1) Why was Blue Poles such a significant purchase? Discuss in relation to Australian art and political culture.

2) The Field was a groundbreaking exhibition but it was also controversial. Do you agree? Why or why not?

3) How did the Cold War impact the art/artworld in Australia?

4) How did Australian artists respond to the idea of ' sculpture in the expanded field'? Discuss in relation to the work of one or two artists.

5) Was Australian art provincial? Discuss in relation to Terry Smith's The Provincialism Problem and Australian art of the 1960's and 1970's

6) What was the role of Australian women's art collectives in the 1970's and how did they respond to feminist/ women's art and theory from America?

7) Why was the influence of America so crucial in Australian art during the period from the 1960's to the 1990's and how was this manifested in the work of two Australian artists.

NOTE: Further questions may be added early in the semester.

In your essay make sure that you refer to Chicago Style (see https://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide/citation-guide-1.html) for the layout of references and Bibliography. Include footnotes for all of the sources that you use in the essay. Make use of primary as well as secondary sources. Refer to books and scholarly articles in addition to websites.


CriteriaFailPassCreditDistinctionHigh Distinction


·       Does not include a bibliography (when required)

·       Little knowledge of major themes

·       Adequate range of sources (when required)

·       Relies mostly on internet sites

Adequate understanding of the topic

·       Good range of references but missing significant sources (when required)

·       Good understanding of the topic and major issues 

·       Wide range of sources, including peer reviewed articles, but missing some authors (when required)

Thorough knowledge of the major issues and perceptive analysis of major points

·       Thoroughly researched, consulting all the major sources, including peer reviewed journals (when required)

Sophisticated understanding of the major issues and awareness of complexities 


·       Lacks any argument and does not address the assessment criteria

·       Sound attempt to write an argument and adequately address the assessment criteria

Clearly stated argument which addresses the assessment criteria convincingly

Strong argument that presents a wide range of convincing points

Highly sophisticated and lucid argument that addresses the assessment criteria comprehensively and insightfully 


·       Does not discuss relevant images

·       Includes a suitable choice of images with a basic analysis

Visual analysis integrated in a basic manner

·       Suitable choice of images with  comprehensive visual analysis

Visual analysis successfully integrated into the overall argument

·       Suitable choice of images with discerning visual analysis

Visual analysis astutely integrated into the overall argument

·       Excellent choice of images, with highly perceptive visual analysis 

Visual analysis integrated into the overall argument in a compelling and seamless manner


·       Little or no structure

·       Aimlessly rambles

Completely off topic

·       Adequate arrangement of ideas.

Usually remains focused on the topic

·       Clear organisation of ideas

·       Good use of paragraphing

·       Good introduction and conclusion

·       Remains focused on the topic

·       Strong organisation

·       Effective use of paragraphing and topic sentences

·       Logical paragraphs

Effective introduction and conclusion

·       Excellent organisation

·       Extremely logical paragraphs with highly effective use of topic sentences

Engaging and highly effective introduction and conclusion


Poorly written with many spelling and grammatical errors

·       Adequately written essay

Usually correct grammar and spelling

·       Well written essay

Usually correct grammar and spelling

·       Fluently written essay

Minimal grammatical and spelling errors

·       Highly articulate and written in an eloquent style 

Comprehension enhanced by grammar and spelling 

REFERENCING (when required

·       Inadequate referencing

Images inadequately labeled

·       Adequate referencing and image labeling but with some mistakes and inconsistencies

·       Use of the Chicago Style Manual and footnotes

·       Good referencing and image labeling with few mistakes

Use of the Chicago Style Manual and footnotes

·       Careful referencing and image labeling with almost no mistakes

·       Use of the Chicago Style Manual and footnotes

Effective use of quotes

·       Meticulous referencing and image labeling 

·       Use of the Chicago Style Manual and footnotes

Excellent and balanced use of quotes

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically, committing to honest and responsible scholarly practice and upholding these values with respect and fairness.

The ANU commits to assisting all members of our community to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle and Academic Misconduct Rule, uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with.

The Academic Misconduct Rule is in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Very minor breaches of the academic integrity principle may result in a reduction of marks of up to 10% of the total marks available for the assessment. The ANU offers a number of online and in person services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. Visit the Academic Skills website for more information about academic integrity, your responsibilities and for assistance with your assignments, writing skills and study.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission


Late Submission

Individual assessment tasks may or may not allow for late submission. Policy regarding late submission is detailed below:

  • Late submission permitted. Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Returning Assignments

Assignments will be returned online via turnitin

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Resubmission of Assignments

Please negotiate re-submission of assignments with the convenor.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Dr Sarah Scott

Research Interests

Art Patronage, Australian Art Abroad, Exhibition History, First Nations Art and Culture

Dr Sarah Scott

Tuesday By Appointment
By Appointment
Dr Sarah Scott

Research Interests

Dr Sarah Scott

Tuesday By Appointment
By Appointment
Lara Nicholls

Research Interests

Lara Nicholls

Tuesday By Appointment

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions