Ms Renee Ugazio


Casual Academic

School /
Work Unit


Contact Details

+61 3 9925 1988


Building: 024
Level: 01
Room: 003

City campus


College of Design and Social Context

Renée Ugazio uses metalsmithing and situation specific art practice to explore being in time and place and the nature of material engagement. She does this informed by her original practice as a jeweller.

Renée shifts the gesture of polishing out of the studio and into the urban environment. She sees the urban environment as a world in various states of decay, each surface in every corner of the city holding a story of it's past. In long forgotten alcoves surfaces rust, but rust in its refined form is also the key ingredient used in the finest jeweller's polish. Renée engages with rust to generate many meanings through renewal (polishing) and decay (rusting) as contemplations on time and change.

In recent gallery exhibitions Renée collected rust from sites she hand polished external to the gallery and then re-deployed this material into the gallery space. In doing this, she explores the materiality of the urban environment and the emergent relationships between the gallery, these sites, process, time and labour.

The artist's interests lie in how the action and trace of polishing "out of context" might stir a contemplative reflection in the viewer. To amplify this she uses a combination of photography, public artwork and installation methods. Her actions and resultant shining surfaces in the laneways of cities encourages those passing by to engage anew in their everyday environment. To perhaps catch a glimpse of these fleeting reflections before the rust re-consumes the materials and reclaims these sites.


PhD Art Candidate currently under examination, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

Master of Fine Art, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

Bachelor of Fine Arts with Distinction (Gold and Silversmithing), RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

Certificate IV in Workplace Training and Assessing

Industry experience


2014 – present HDR Facilitator, Centre for Art, Society and Transformation, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

2014 – present Co-Director, Research Exchange, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

2010 – present Sessional Lecturer, School of Art & School of Education, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

2015 HDR Representative on the School of Art Research Committee (Proxy)

2014 Vice President of MAKE (RMIT Object based Practice Student Union Group)

2009 Graduate Examiner for Gold & Silversmithing, School of Art, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

Solo Exhibitions

2016 Shifting Sites, School of Art Gallery, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

2015 Gestures of Time, Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts, Taipei, TWN

2015 Re-citing, Counihan Gallery, Brunswick, AUS

2014 SHED, White Night Melbourne, Melbourne, AUS

Papers presentations, Invitational Lectures, Commission and Artist in Residencies

2015 Artist in Residence, Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts, Taipei, TWN

2015 Speaker, Danger: Research in Progress, Kalide Theatre, Melbourne, AUS

2015 Speaker, Social Response: a Dialogue around Art and Social Engagement Symposium, Design Hub, Melbourne, AUS

2014 Panellist, Transformations: Art and the City, Design Hub, Melbourne, AUS

2013 Speaker, Practice and Research, MFA Advanced Professional Practice Symposium, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

2013 Speaker, 'Research in Progress' Social Research Platform, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

2010 Speaker, 'Impolite Craft', Making Objects Personal, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

2010 Speaker, 'bound and unbound', Jewellery Practice as a Site for Enquiry, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

2009 Speaker, SCHMUCK, MFA Professional Practice Series, RMIT Gallery, AUS

2009 Commission, 50/50, 50 limited edition pins, Cabrini Hospital, Melbourne, AUS

2009 Lecture, Jewellery Linguistics and the Body, Gerrit Rietveld Academie, Amsterdam, NLD

Selected Recent Group Exhibitions

2015 Surfacing, Lightscape Project, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

2014 Azimuth, School of Art Gallery, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

2014 Material Perception, First Site Gallery, Melbourne, AUS

2014 Material Perception, D11, Docklands, AUS

2013 Close to Hand II, First Site Gallery, Melbourne, AUS

2012 Close to Hand, School of Art Gallery, RMIT University, Melbourne, AUS

2011 Jewellery Topos (touring), Gallery Loupe, New Jersey, USA & Gallery Marzee, Nijmegen, NLD

2010 Signs of Change, Form, Perth, AUS

2010 Secret Files of The Working Mans College, Project Space, Melbourne, AUS

2010 Little Weeds: small acts of tenderness and violence, Adelaide Fringe, multiple cites, Adelaide, AUS

Supervisor information

Practice-led research

Contemporary jewellery, craft, body sculpture, silversmithing, art and object making.

Site based art, situation specific art, performance art.

Artistic inquires into time, materiality or experience.


Ugazio, R. (2015). Jeweller down the Rabbit Hole In: Edges, Borders, Gaps JMGA Conference, JMGA (in press), Sydney.

Ugazio, R. (2013). Remaking Iron In: Unmaking, Making, Self-published, Melbourne.

Ugazio, R. (2010). Thresholds of five or more In Five, plus and minus, Kings ARI, Melbourne.

Ugazio, R. (2009). two hundred and eleven, In eightyseven, Trocadero ARI, Melbourne.

Ugazio, R. (2008). Finding the Body In: Inside-Out JMGA Conference, JMGA, Adelaide.

Artwork in Publications

MAKE group. (2014) Azimuth, Self Published, Melbourne.

Baines, R. Polentas, N. & Miller, M (eds). (2010) Australian jewellery topos talking about place: eighteen contemporary Australian jewellers, Australian Scholarly Publishing, North Melbourne, Vic.

Butler, E. Murray, K (eds). (2010) Signs of Change, Form Gallery Perth, North Melbourne, Vic

Galerie Marzee, (2009) Marzee Magazine, vol 66 ,Nijmegen, Netherlands.