Publication Details

Ballard, S.. "Among the Machines: Australian and NZ Artists" Dunedin Public Art Gallery, 6 July - 3 November 2013. Dunedin: Dunedin Public Art Gallery, 2013.



Research Background

Curated by Susan Ballard and Aaron Kreisler, curator, Dunedin Public Art Gallery (DPAG), Among the Machines is a major exhibition of 13 leading Australian and New Zealand artists. Australian artists: Susan Norrie; AU/NZ artists Daniel Crooks, Ronnie van Hout, Hayden Fowler; NZ artists: Aaron and Hannah Beehre, Douglas Bagnall, Nathan Pohio, Fiona Pardington, Ruth Buchanan, Anne Shelton, Bronwyn Holloway-Smith, Jae Hoon Lee, and Stella Brennan.

Research Contribution

As curator, Ballard selected the artists, commissioned 13 new works from the artists, installed the exhibition, wrote the room guides and the substantial book catalogue, designed the public and visitor’s programme, and presented a panel discussion. An international visiting scholar grant enabled original research that connected historical understandings of ecology and the machinic (via study of Samuel Butler’s ‘Erewhon’) with contemporary artworks and installations by leading Australian and New Zealand artists. The curator worked with each artist to commission a new work in response to the research.

Research Significance

The Dunedin Public Art Gallery is one of New Zealand’s pre-eminent art galleries, and the exhibition took over 3 floors of the contemporary galleries. The exhibition was the outcome of the Dunedin Public Art Gallery international visiting scholar programme and received substantial funding from Creative New Zealand. Record visitor numbers attended the exhibition, which was accompanied by a substantial book/ catalogue and three months of coordinated public lectures and a visitors’ programme including film premieres and school workshops. The book is a joint publication with the other visiting scholar Dr. Caleb Kelly (UNSW), and was launched at the City Gallery in Wellington, NZ.


Link to publisher version (URL)

Dunedin Public Art Gallery


I was lead curator and invited scholar for AMONG THE MACHINES. The exhibition included 13 artists from New Zealand and Australia including major figures. The artists are: Ruth Buchanan, Bronwyn Holloway-Smith, Hayden Fowler, Douglas Bagnall, Fiona Pardington, Nathan Pohio, Hannah and Aaron Beehre, Daniel Crooks, Ronnie Van Hout, Susan Norrie, Jae Hoon Lee, Stella Brennan and Ann Shelton. The exhibition was advertised in E-flux, Art in Australia, Art News. I was interviewed on National Radio (4th July 2013), and it has received numerous favorable reviews.

machine1.pdf (109588 kB)
Among the Machines exhibition images

ATM art&OZ.pdf (2604 kB)
Among the Machines promotion #1

ATM artzone.pdf (1844 kB)
Among the Machines promotion #2

Eggleton Listener.pdf (936 kB)
Among the Machines review