Dr Gray . . . enjoying being "home among the gum trees"
Dr Gray . . . enjoying being "home among the gum trees"
11 March 2011

The new director of The University of Queensland Art Museum, Dr Campbell Gray, stepped into his new role this week – “very excited” to be back in Australia.

Dr Gray has been director of the Museum of Art at Brigham Young University in Utah for 14 years.

He holds a Doctor of Philosophy in Art History from the University of Sussex and has extensive experience in the higher education sector.

“One of the dimensions that really strikes me about UQ is its strong, exciting academic environment,” Dr Gray said.

“The UQ Art Museum has a really wonderful opportunity to contribute to academic discourse within the uni’s curriculum.”

Dr Gray said he was enjoying being “home among the gum trees” and had been admiring the beauty of the landscape and architecture on UQ’s St Lucia campus, and the stunning James and Mary Emelia Mayne Centre, home to the UQAM.

He said staff at Brigham Young University were surprised when he resigned his post: “They thought they had me for life!”

Dr Gray has previously held roles including Senior Lecturer and Coordinator of the Postgraduate Studies Unit in the Faculty of Visual and Performing Arts at the University of Western Sydney, and coordinator of the UWS Museum Studies research and coursework activities.

UQ Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Michael Keniger said that as well as having significant experience in higher education, Dr Gray had worked extensively with public galleries.

“Campbell was the Inaugural Director of the Lewers Bequest and Penrith Regional Art Gallery in New South Wales,” Professor Keniger said.

“With an academic background in museum studies, he will build on the relationship between the UQAM and the academic activities of the University.”

Dr Gray replaces Nick Mitzevich, who was appointed director of the Art Gallery of South Australia last July, after serving three years as UQAM director.

Professor Keniger thanked Ms Michele Helmrich for her leadership of the UQ Art Museum as acting director over the past eight months.

The UQ Art Museum is currently hosting A National Gallery of Australia exhibition, Australian Portraits 1880-1960, featuring 54 portraits by 34 leading Australian painters, including Tom Roberts, E Phillips Fox, Hugh Ramsay, George W Lambert, Max Meldrum, Rupert Bunny, Violet Teague, Margaret Preston, Stella Bowen, Napier Waller, Albert Tucker, Arthur Boyd, Sidney Nolan, Roy de Maistre, Russell Drysdale and John Brack.

The University of Queensland began collecting art in the early 1940s; its collection is now the second largest public art collection in Queensland.

Media: Dr Campbell Gray, ph +61 7 334 68787; Beth Porter UQAM +61 7 3346 8787, b.porter@uq.edu.au; Fiona Cameron, UQ Communications, ph +61 7 3346 7086