One of the more interesting recent events on the New York art scene was the “Australian Accent” show at the Institute for Art and Urban Resources (P.S. 1).[1] Although it was partly a showcase for new talent, importing three Australian artists for their first serious American exposure, it was also another example of the recent American interest in Australia’s artistic life. (Five Australian artists are included in the Museum of Modern Art’s current “International Survey” show, for instance, and this fall the Guggenheim will feature no less than eight artists in their own survey of Australian art.[2]) The aim of the P.S. 1 exhibition was to demonstrate that Australia’s creative fecundity, so...


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