700s Arts Festival

Celebrating our arts, design and media collections.


Throughout August and September 2015, Swanston Library hosted exhibitions, talks and a series of workshops to celebrate our arts book, journal and DVD collection. This collection is classified within the 700s of the Dewey Decimal System. Swanston Library’s “700s” are recognised for their strength, diversity and as an inspirational browsing collection. They are now the largest collection held on-site at Swanston Library.

We’ve seized the opportunity to embrace temporary space made available through preparations for the Swanston Library Transformation and invited members of the RMIT community to partner with us in a celebration of the arts at RMIT.

Keynote and launch

13 August at 6pm

The Festival was launched with a keynote speech from Professor Paul Gough on “The Art of Browsing (and the Browsing of Art)” and performances from Mick Douglas and Baron Von Choice.


13 August – 25 September

  • Art Against the Grain
    Presented by RMIT Gallery
    Curated by Jon Buckingham
  • Referencing Artists
    Works from RMIT alumni, staff and past staff
    Curated by Susan Wyers
  • Grazing the 700s
    Works from students and staff from RMIT School of Art
    Curated by Phil Edwards
  • Screen art programs
    A variety of screen art programs from RMIT staff, students and alumni
    Coordinated by Kim Munro
  • Sound programs
    Sound installations and programs
    Supported by Audio Kinetic Experiment (AkE) Lab and Design Futures Lab


Free lunchtime workshops were held for RMIT students and staff:

Enquires about the event: contact Amanda Kerley.


The Festival came together within a couple of months with the generous and enthusiastic participation of hundreds of people: a testament to the talents of the RMIT community. Fruitful partnerships were forged between the Library and the RMIT Gallery, LINK, College of Design and Social Context, School of Art and the AFI Research Centre.

Festival direction: Amanda Kerley

Exhibitions coordination: Sue Wyers

Launch coordination: Danielle Archer

Festival coordination team: Miranda Vanags, Morgan Simpson, Nicola Coady, Adam Browne, Mike Summers, Iza Bartosiewicz and Hannah Dunlop.

Installation technicians: Rob Bridgewater and Nick Devlin