INSIGHT OUT: the collaborative project bringing current research to life through art

Wednesday 3 March 2021

INSIGHT OUT is a visually stimulating and highly innovative exhibition showcasing interdisciplinary collaboration across The Australian National University (ANU). 

On display at the University’s public art space – Exhibition Avenue – from 8 March until 7 May 2021, this one-of-a-kind group show is presented by Kambri at ANU, and is in partnership with ANU Learning Communities and aMBUSH Gallery.

INSIGHT OUT experiments with the communication of ideas via the medium of art and demonstrates the benefits of teamwork across diverse fields of study by combining The Australian National University’s globally renowned academic research with the creativity of students from the School of Art and Design.

The project paired 24 visual arts students with an academic undertaking research at one of the University’s seven academic Colleges: Arts and Social Sciences; Asia and the Pacific; Business and Economics; Engineering and Computer Science; Health and Medicine; Law; and Science. 

Each pair met at length to discuss the academic’s research and interests, and consider ways in which the most vital elements of the information could be conveyed to the general public. The artists were then given stylistic freedom to represent the research visually, in the form of a physical artwork. The resulting works traverse a range of disciplines, including painting, illustration, photography, and digital art.

The research topics include: memory and truth, heritage rock art, the regulation and governance of food policies, the mechanics of the human knee, blockchain, stillbirth, solar cells, archaeology, global health and infectious diseases, representations of youth by the media, communication in medical settings, and artificial intelligence, to name a few.

College research 


Dr Catherine Galvin

Artwork: "To Mould; A Verb" by Sophie Dumaresq

This artwork is based on the research of Dr Catherine Galvin, which looks at how age and movement factor in osteoarthritis of the human knee. It’s based on data from the first moving image scans collected from living bodies rather than cadavers. We discussed the concept of how when we move, we are shaping not only our own bodies but also the bodies of future generations and that of their (and our) environments. We’ve inherited the bodies of our ancestors via DNA and through their actions and the environment they evolved to live within.


Professor Kylie Catchpole

Artwork: "Light Management" by Jeremy David Maffescioni

Whilst reading Professor Kylie Catchpole’s research on improving the efficiency of tandem perovskite/silicon photovoltaic cells, the concept of ‘light management’ resonated with me. Light management is the concept and problem of how to best capture and use as much of the constituent wavelengths of the spectrum of light as possible to produce a power source. It’s my intention that the complexity of her research is brought forth by concept abstraction and data visualisation, so the true beauty of what her work is achieving can be recognised. My digital work utilises 3D modelling techniques in combination with photorealistic rendering to visualise these concepts and data.



Dr Jeremy Smith

Artwork: "Human Touch" by Chin-Jie Melodie Liu

Humanitarian engineer, Dr. Jeremy Smith, aims to reintroduce the human aspect back into engineering. His unique practice “critiques engineering while improving quality of life for everyone”. The sets of arms highlight the collaborative process that’s fundamental to humanitarian engineering. The hands on the right hold a mobile phone, a tool that’s important to document fieldwork and provide feedback. The left set of arms hold a physical notebook with notes on refining the appropriate technology. The hands in the foreground indicate the technology is secondary to those involved in the process. The window revealing the Australian landscape reminds us that change starts in our own communities.

The 24 original pieces in the exhibition will be presented on six large-scale display cubes along University Avenue, providing an inviting gateway into the heart of Kambri that celebrates the University’s world-class research and teaching.

Bill Dimas, the co-founder of aMBUSH Gallery, says, “We are thrilled to showcase world- class ANU research, as well as the talent of School of Art and Design students. This project provides students with professional experience, supports them by ensuring they’re paid NAVA (National Visual Arts Association)-approved rates, and also demonstrates the power of collaboration within the ANU community and beyond.” 

This new group exhibition at Kambri’s outdoor public art space, Exhibition Avenue, was produced by ANU’s Learning Communities in partnership with aMBUSH Gallery, in an effort to incorporate the creative arts and cultures into all fields of the University.

Running from 8 March until 7 May 2021, INSIGHT OUT will be on display free of charge 24 hours, 7 days a week on the six display cubes along University Avenue.

Register for the INSIGHT OUT opening night event on Thursday 11 March.


Updated:  10 August 2021/Responsible Officer:  Dean, CECS/Page Contact:  CECS Marketing