In 1987 the legendary English editor and sinologist Peter Townsend brought Art Monthly to Australia, changing forever the landscape for art magazine publishing in this country. Townsend, who died in 2006, not only brought the magazine to Canberra (where it has been based at the ANU School of Art & Design since 1992), but managed to instil in his subsequent editors a journalistic zeal and curiosity that has made the Australian Art Monthly a topic of conversation not only for its lively contents but for its attention-grabbing covers.
As Art Monthly celebrates its 30 years in Australia and its 300th edition in August 2017, the magazine’s five surviving editors – Peter Timms (1993–98), Philippa Kelly (1999–2002), Deborah Clark (2002–07), Maurice O’Riordan (2008–13) and Michael Fitzgerald (2014–ongoing) – have been brought together in an ‘editor’s edit’. For 300 covers they have been invited to each select their three favourite covers which will be displayed along with commissioned artworks and Art Monthly’s entire cover archive to provide not only an insight into magazine editing and design, but an enlightening overview of Australia’s visual arts over time.
300 covers: Art Monthly in Australia 1987 – 2017: Foyer Gallery, ANU School of Art & Design, Canberra, 7–17 June 2017; opening Friday, 9 June 2017, 5–7pm, all welcome;