Caroline Phillips is an Australian visual artist whose work has been shown in a number of solo and group exhibitions locally and Internationally. Working primarily in sculpture, Phillips creates handmade objects and installations that synthesize industrial and textile based materials. Her work critiques contemporary feminist aesthetics through modes of abstraction and material presence. Motifs of embodiment, connection and tension are developed in her practice through soft and flexible materials, minimalism, repetition, colour and surface qualities. Phillips also works as an independent curator and researcher on collaborative projects that highlight the strength of women’s art practice and challenge systemic inequities in political and cultural systems.
Phillips has completed a PhD (Fine Art) from Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne in 2017. She holds a Master of Fine Arts (2012) and a Postgraduate Diploma in Visual Art (2009), also from the Victorian College of the Arts, and a Bachelor of Fine Art (Painting) from Phillip Institute of Technology, Melbourne (1983). Her work has been shown at a broad range of galleries and museums across Australian and International venues. Solo exhibitions have been held at George Paton Gallery, Melbourne, Blindside, Melbourne, Margaret Lawrence Gallery, Melbourne, Factory 49, Sydney, Craft, Melbourne and the Cité International des Arts, Paris. Selected group exhibition venues include: Slade School of Art Research Centre, London; The Substation, Melbourne; Noosa Regional Gallery, Queensland, The Great Hall, OCAD University, Toronto; Kings Artist Run, Melbourne; Seventh, Melbourne; M16, Canberra; West Space, Melbourne; Artscape Gibraltar Point, Toronto; Australian Tapestry Workshop, Melbourne; Ararat Regional Art Gallery, Victoria; First Draft Gallery, Sydney, Living Museum of the West, Melbourne; Albury Art Gallery, New South Wales and NARS Foundation, Brooklyn, USA.
Phillips has been successful in securing grants and funding across a number of research, development and presentation projects including NAVA Australian Artists’ Grant, City of Melbourne Arts Project Grant, Creative Victoria VicArts Grant, University of Melbourne POTS Award (Prestigious Overseas Travelling Scholarship), Victorian Women’s Trust Sponsorship Grant, Melbourne Social Equity Institute Doctoral Academy Grant and Seed Funding Grant, Copyright Agency Limited Creative Industries Career Fund Grant, NAVA The Janet Holmes á Court Artists’ Grant and the Australian Postgraduate Award for Masters and PhD Research. She has undertaken a number of local and International artist residencies including Australian Tapestry Workshop Artist in Residence (Melbourne), Feminist Art Conference International Feminist Art Residency (Toronto), NARS Foundation International Artist Residency (Brooklyn, NY) and Art Gallery of New South Wales Moya Dyring Studio, Cité International des Arts (Paris). Caroline was the winner of the 2009 George Paton Gallery Proud Award where her work was acquired for the University of Melbourne Student Union Art Collection.
In her work as an independent curator, researcher and facilitator the 2014 project The f Word; Contemporary Feminist Art in Australia was exhibited at two major regional venues, the Gippsland Art Gallery, Sale and Ararat Regional Art Gallery. Her collaborative project of 2015, f-generation: feminism, art, progression (co-curated with Juliette Peers and Veronica Caven Aldous) involved over 100 artists and was presented at George Paton Gallery, Melbourne and Mudfest, University of Melbourne. The West Space project AS IF: Echoes of the Women’s Art Register (a collaborative project with Juliette Peers, Stephanie Leigh and the Women’s Art Register) formed part of the award winning 2015 Melbourne Fringe event AS IF: 40 years and beyond; Celebrating the Women’s Art Register. Phillips continues her involvement with this longstanding “Organisation of National Heritage Significance” as Secretary of the Women’s Art Register. She is also currently working as research assistant to Professor Anne Marsh on her Australian Research Council funded project Women, Art and Feminism in Australia since 1970. This research is based at the Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne and is in tandem with the co-curated participatory program Doing Feminism/Sharing the World at the Norma Redpath House, Melbourne, forthcoming summer of 2017/18.