Areas of Expertise

  • Photography theory
  • Studio art
  • Interdisciplinary practise
  • Undergrad & post-grad teaching
  • Art history
  • Grant assessment
  • Curatorship & exhibition practise
  • Arts administration
  • Peer counselling
  • Guest lectures
  • Writing
  • Research 

Described as a lively and engaging speaker, Susan is available for lectures and consultations.

Abridged CV

Dr Susan Fereday is an Australian artist, writer, educator and researcher. Born in Adelaide in 1959, she currently lives in the Adelaide Hills.


  • Doctor of Philosophy, Monash University (2010)
  • Master of Arts (Fine Art) by research, Deakin University, Prahran (1992)
  • Bachelor of Arts (Fine Art), Victoria College, Prahran (1986)
  • Technician's Certificate in Photography, Elizabeth TAFE (1982)

Place of residence

  • Adelaide (2015-present)
  • Wiesbaden (2008-2015)
  • Melbourne (2005-2008)
  • Vienna (2002-2004)
  • Paris (1996-1997)
  • Melbourne (1983-1996)
  • Adelaide (1959-1982)

Lecturer art theory & studio practise 

  • University of Adelaide (Curatorial & Museum Studies) (2018-2019)
  • Adelaide Central School of Art (2015)
  • Monash University (2005-2008)
  • Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (1998-2002)
  • Victoria College of the Arts, University of Melbourne (1990-1993)

Arts administration

  • Australia Council Visual Arts Craft Fund (1996-1999)
  • RMIT Gallery Storey Hall, Melbourne (1995-1996)
  • Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne (1992-1995)

Curatorial projects

  • Ruins in Reverse (artists Lauren Berkowitz, Adam Boyd, Colin Duncan, Hewson-Walker, Shaun Kirby, Chris Langton, Callum Morton, Rose Nolan, Deborah Ostrow, Kathy Temin, Chris Ulbrick, Chris White, Constanze Zikos) RMIT Gallery (1996)
  • Like-ness: 46 photographs from Waverley City Collection, Centre for Contemporary Photography (1995)
  • Ipso-Photo (co-curated with Stuart Koop) (Margaret Roberts, Chris Fortescue, Marie Sierra-Hughes, Phillip Watkins) Centre for Contemporary Photography (1994)
  • Don’t Stop (co-curated with Shiralee Saul) gallery shop and mail-order catalogue works by 30 artists, Linden Gallery (1994)
  • Immortality (Rose Farrell & George Parkin, Jeff Gibson, Chris Tabecki, Polixeni Papapetrou, Heather Fernon) Centre for Contemporary Photography, (1993)
  • After the Fact: Photographs from the Police Forensic Archive, Victorian Centre for Photography (1992)


  • 'The Object of Photography: a theory of photography in (my) pictures', artist monograph (2013)
  • 'Alpha City,’ catalogue text for Christopher Köller exhibition, Margaret Lawrence Gallery, VCA (2011)
  • ‘Stretched Skin,’ catalogue text for Penelope Davis exhibition, Nellie Castan Gallery (2011)
  • 'Wired World,' catalogue text for Simon Maidment & Paul Shephard exhibition, Conical Gallery, Melbourne (2006)
  • 'I Fall in Love with a Beautiful Newcomer Hiding a Deadly Secret,' artist book of poetic text (2000)
  • ‘Ruins in Reverse,’ catalogue essay for group exhibition launching new gallery, RMIT Gallery Storey Hall (1996)
  • ‘Photography in the art museum’, feature article, Agenda #13/14 (1990)

Public lectures

  • ‘Angela Merkel’s Raute and the Little Man in the Boat,' University of Adelaide (2019); Woman, Art & Feminism conference, University of Melbourne (2018)
  • ‘The Curious Truth About Photographic Seeing,' seminar, Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne (2013)

  • ‘For the Wall,' Jeff Wall retrospective, NGV International, Melbourne (2012)

  • 'I Am the Ghost in the Image: photography as mirror, window, veil,' AAANZ conference, Melbourne (2006)
  • 'After Photography,' Queensland Festival of Photography (2006)
  • 'Imaging the Other in Recent Australian Photography,' Australian High Commission New Delhi, India (1999)
  • ‘The jig is up,' Australian Contemporary Art Fair forum (1992)


  • 'Light Out of Darkness: the origin of photography in mystery and melancholy,' doctoral thesis, exploring occluded meanings in early photographs by Nicéphore Niépce and William Henry Fox Talbot (2010)
  • 'Re-photography as Critical Practise,' masters thesis (1992)

Solo exhibitions

  • Sarah Scout Presents, Melbourne (2011, 2013, 2016)
  • Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne (2013)
  • West Space, Melbourne (2008)
  • Sutton Gallery, Melbourne (1993, 1995, 1998, 2000, 2002, 2005)
  • Bellas Gallery, Brisbane (1995, 1999, 2002)
  • Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane (1994, 2001-2002)
  • Artspace, Sydney (1996)
  • Experimental Art Foundation, Adelaide (1993)
  • 200 Gertrude Street, Melbourne (1990)
  • Australian Centre for Photography, Sydney (1989)

Group exhibitions

  • As Still as Life (curator Anouska Phizacklea) Monash Gallery of Art (2019)

  • An Unorthodox Flow of Images (curators Naomi Cass & Pippa Milne) Centre for Contemporary Photography (2017)

  • The Dust Never Settles (curator Michele Helmrich) University of Queensland Art Museum (2017)

  • Lurid Beauty: Australian Surrealism and its Echoes (curator Simon Maidment) National Gallery of Victoria (2015)

  • Transmission: Legacies of the Television Age (curator Maggie Finch) National Gallery of Victoria (2015)
  • Photographic Abstractions (curators Stella Loftus-Hills & Stephen Zagala) Monash Gallery of Art (2013)
  • Photographer Unknown (curator Kyla McFarlane) Monash University Museum of Art (2009)
  • Photography is Dead! Long Live Photography (curator Linda Michael) Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney (1996)
  • The Aberrant Object: Women Dada and Surrealism (curator Juliana Engberg), Museum of Modern Art at Heide (1994)


  • National Gallery of Australia
  • National Gallery of Victoria
  • Queensland Art Gallery
  • Monash Gallery of Art
  • Mornington Peninsula Regional Gallery
  • University of Queensland Art Collection
  • Private collections

Grants, Awards, Residencies

  • Australia Council, VACB, New Work Grant (2012, 2007, 2002, 1992)
  • Mollie Holman Medal for best thesis, Faculty of Art & Design, Monash University (2010)
  • Studio residency, Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris (1996, 2007)
  • Monash University Publications Grant (2007)
  • Australian Postgraduate Award, 3.5 years (2006)
  • Arts Victoria, Arts Development, New Work Grant (2002)
  • Ian Potter Cultural Trust Grant (2002)
  • Studio residency, IMA Brisbane (2001-2002)
  • Australia Council, VACB, Artist Development Grant (1999)
  • Artist residencey, Noosa Regional Gallery (1999)
  • Anne and Gordon Samstag Scholarship, University of South Australia (1995)


  • Robert Nelson, ‘National Gallery of Victoria's showcase of Australian surrealism not what you might expect’ (review), The Age and Sydney Morning Herald, 9/11/2015
  • Jane O’Sullivan, ‘Susan Fereday’ (interview), Australian Art Collector, #63, Jan-Mar 2013, pp.76-77
  • Robert Nelson, ‘Close encounters of the virtual kind through the lens’ (review), The Age, 20/02/2013
  • Greg Neville, 'After Life' (review), Greg Neville's Photography Blog, 5 February 2011
  • Tim Alves, ‘Light across the lens’ (review) Inkblot blog, 23 February 2011
  • Penny Webb, 'Susan Fereday: Afterlife' (review), Art Guide Australia #69, Jan-Feb 2011, pp.39-43
  • Anne Marsh, Look: Contemporary Australian Photography Since 1980 (book), Melbourne: Macmillan, 2010, pp. 69, 170, 379-380
  • Greg Neville, ‘Grail and Wail’ (review), Greg Neville’s Photography Blog, 11 September 2010
  • Melissa Miles ‘Whose art counts?’ (feature article), Art Monthly Australia #224, October 2009, pp.5-8
  • Helen McDonald, Erotic Ambiguities: The Female Nude in Art (book), London & New York, 2001, pp.176-178
  • Kyla McFarlane (ed.), Photographer Unknown (exhibition catalogue), essays by Daniel Palmer and curator Kyla McFarlane. Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne, 2009 
  • Ella Mudie, ‘Double exposure for faded images’ (article), The Age A2, 30/8/2008, p.17-18
  • Robert Nelson, ‘Memories lie beyond the surface’ (review), The Age, 25/6/2008, p.16
  • Penny Webb, ‘Following the Customs of the Country’ (review), The Age, 01/03/2005, p.17
  • Ihor Holubisky, 'Susan Fereday at Brisbane IMA', Art & Australia, Summer 2002, pp.234-235
  • Susan Fereday, I Fall in Love With a Beautiful Newcomer Hiding a Deadly Secret (artist's book of poetic text), Melbourne, 2000
  • Linda Michael (ed.) Photography is Dead! Long Live Photography! (exhibition catalogue), essays by curator Linda Michael, George Alexander, Martyn Jolly. Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, 1996 
  • Robert Schubert, The Object of Photography (exhibition catalogue), Artspace, Sydney, 1996
  • Robert Schubert, ‘Susan Fereday: Sutton Gallery’ (review), Art & Text, #52, 1995, pp.91-92
  • Robert Nelson, ‘Installation poking at hole in halo’ (review), The Age, 17/5/1995, p.21
  • Jeffrey Fereday, The Object of Photography (exhibition catalogue), IMA and Sutton Gallery, 1994 
  • Juliana Engberg (ed.), The Aberrant Object: Women, Dada and Surrealism (exhibition catalogue), essays by curator Juliana Engberg, Robyn McKenzie, Kenneth Wach, Anne Marsh. Museum of Modern Art at Heide, 1993
  • Stuart Koop (ed.) Reflex (exhibition catalogue), Essays curator Stuart Koop and Geoffrey Batchen. CCP, 1993 
  • Jeffrey Fereday, Object a,(exhibition catalogue), Experimental Art Foundation, Adelaide, 1993 
  • Stuart Koop, ‘Review: Susan Fereday’, Art & Text, #43, 1992, pp.78-79
  • Susan Fereday, Ascendant, Anxious Objects, Astonish Me. Essays by Jeffrey Fereday and Carolyn Barnes. Linden Gallery, 1992 (exhibition catalogue)
  • Rex Butler, ‘A Love That Cannot Speak Its Name’ (review), Agenda, #15, 1990, p.19
  • Patricia Piccinini and Peter Hennessey, ‘Value (review), Eyeline, #12, 1990, pp.43-44
  • Carolyn Barnes, ‘Value’ (review), Agenda, #10, 1990, pp.22-23
  • Edward Colless, Amoré (exhibition catalogue), Artspace, Sydney, 1990