Art Almanac: National Art School Archives and Collection

Art Almanac: National Art School Archives and Collection

Sydney’s National Art School (NAS) is the custodian of a rich historical archive brimming with thousands of student artworks across a variety of media, objects, photographs, and documentation related to both the current art school and former gaol site, which are organised across three collection categories.

The Student Collection is the largest, comprising works created on site by NAS students, teaching aids, and plaster casts; The Art Collection consists of a range of artworks by students and teachers in their later careers who are celebrated in the art world; and The Archive Collection boasts over 700 historical items, among them are photographs, gaol plans, manuscripts, film, rare student files, diplomas, catalogues, snapshots of students and staff from the 1920s, and more.

Art Almanac goes behind the scenes with NAS Archivist and Collections Manager, Deborah Beck, to find out how the items are acquired, preserved, and managed, and the ways in which the historically important material is shared with students and the wider-reaching public.

Article by: Kirsty Francis. Image: Debora Beck in the NAS Archives with paintings from the NAS Collection including Untitled (male model) c. 1947 by Tony Tuckson

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