Connect with Creativity

23 February 2024

Art connects. It connects us to our past, our present and our future. It connects us with bold ideas and challenging conversations. And it connects us to communities that help our conversations and ideas to develop.

With the launch of UQ Arts we want to connect you to the creators, curators, scholars and publishers dedicated to capturing stories and ideas through creative expression.

Associate Professor Fiona Foley.
Associate Professor Fiona Foley.

Meet Associate Professor Fiona Foley. Recognised for her outstanding contribution to the development of Australian art, Dr Foley is an Indigenous artist with an international reputation and the creative force behind numerous major public art projects in the country. 

Now working as a Principal Research Fellow in the School of Historical and Philosophical Inquiry, Dr Foley was recently awarded an Australian Research Council DECRA for her project “Investigating the Agency of Aboriginal Frontier War Memorials.” 

She plans to use this funding to make 14 short films and publish a book through UQ Press over the next 3 years.

“Aboriginal people have the right to remember, and I plan to interview descendants talking about frontier wars and their particular history on country,” she said.

Dr Foley began her journey at The University of Queensland through her appointment as an Adjunct Professor and the project Courting Blakness (2011 – 2014).

The public art exhibition in the Great Court built upon UQ’s tradition of leadership to create new art, new knowledge, and new relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people. 

During her time on the project, she was inspired by one of the other artists in the curatorial team, Ryan Presley, who was in the midst of his PhD.  

“I had just turned 50 and thought, I want a new challenge in life – the time was right to go back into higher education,” Dr Foley said.

So, she did. And began tackling her PhD which explored historical opium use in Queensland. 

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