Five Australian artists unveil their interpretation of ‘perfection’ at the feet of Michelangelo’s David, sparking conversation and debate to put the University of Melbourne on the global stage.
Following significant investment into the newly relaunched Faculty of Fine Arts and Music, the University of Melbourne needed to build its global reputation in order to attract the best global talent in staff and students.
How could it make its mark alongside the most reputable and prestigious institutions around the world like the Julliard, Royal College of the Arts and the NYU Tisch School of the Arts?
The Faculty of Fine Arts and Music needed to make a bold statement as a thought leader in the arts.
Recognising that art is used as a tool to spark provocative debate and demonstrate social progress, we asked UOM students and alumni to re-examine the original briefs that gave birth to the world’s most iconic artworks and offered them the chance to re-interpret them.
Putting emerging artists on a global stage
Tapping into media and social conversations around ‘perfection in a digital age’, five students and alumni from UOM were commissioned to produce a work in response to the brief of ‘perfection’ – inspired by the brief received by Michelangelo which resulted in David.
We then did the impossible. We negotiated for the five works, which spanned music composition, choreography and visual art, to be exhibited at the feet of David – a feat that has never been pulled off before.
This was achieved through hard-won partnerships with notoriously private and exclusive arts institutions – the Galleria dell’ Accademia di Firenze, where David is housed, and the adjoining Accademia di Belle Arti di Firenze, a historic fine arts academy.
The First Commissions exhibition included specially curated live performances and attracted international media and thought leaders in the arts, education, entertainment and design. We also coordinated an international embargo and media relations program in Shanghai, London and New York.
The campaign gave UOM the opportunity to showcase Australian-nurtured talent while demonstrating the power of the arts to challenge how people feel and see the world.