elizbeth bees at Ginza low res jpg


E l i z a b e t h   P r e s a


Elizabeth Presa is a Melbourne based artist working with a range of materials and process including plaster casting, sericulture and apiculture.  She is interested in the poetics of textuality, reading and writing, and sometimes collaborates with philosophers.   Her sculpture installations often use the forensics of plaster to explore  traces of the psyche, the environment and biological life.  Elizabeth is the the Head of the interdisciplinary Centre for Ideas, at the University of Melbourne.

Elizabeth Presa sometimes collaborates with her daughter, performance artist Anastasia Klose   http://anastasiaklose.wordpress.com/.




ACADEMIC QUALIFICATIONS: PhD and M.A. Centre for Comparative Literature & Cultural Studies, Monash University; B.A. (Hons) University of Melbourne; Post Grad Sculpt. Phillip Inst; Dip. Sculpt, Victorian College of the Arts.




2017     Garden of small nuptials, sculpture installation for Aberrant Nuptials International Deleuze Studies conference, Orpheus Institute Ghent, Belgium.

2017     Of Martyrium and Reliquary, with Mireille Eid,  Articulate Project Space, Gallery, Sydney.

2016    This is childhood but it must not be my childhood, Seventh Gallery, Fitzroy, Melbourne.

2015     Life must imitate Matter’  exhibition, Orpheus Institute, Ghent, Belgium.

2014     Beehive Village, Lorne Sculpture Biennale, curator Julie Collins, Victoria, Australia.

2013     Small Utopias: Architecture for Bees,  Westspace Gallery , Melbourne , Australia.

2013      Night Glass, Pilchuck School of Glass, Seattle, USA

2013      Architecture for Solitary Bees, Youkobo Art space, Tokyo, Japan

2012      Screentest 508,  with Christopher Koller, video single channel projection, Westspace Gallery, Melbourne

2011      Small thefts,  with Cyrus Tang, Alliance Francais de Melbourne .

2010      Interior Castle, with architect Gregory Burgess, Linden Contemporary Arts Centre, Melbourne.

2009     Journey to the surface of the earth: Atlantis MARS Gallery, Melbourne.

2007     Ark, MARS Gallery, Melbourne.

2007     Dear Jean Jacques, Cite International des Arts, Paris.

2006     Calculation of the Rainbow, MARS Gallery, Melbourne.

2006      Skin and Peel, sculpture installation , St. Johns Lutheran Church, Southbank.

2005      Moon Water’, MARS Gallery, Melbourne.

2005      Papier Machine,  curator Kirstin Rann, L’Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival, Spacement Gallery, Melbourne.

2004       Peel, Museum de Livre des Artists Contemporain, France.

2004       Peel, Éditions Galilée, Paris.

2002       Milk River, Meru Art Gallery, Brooklyn, New York.

2002       A Small Penance’ Performance, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, Singapore.

2002       Ultra sound, 35 minute video by Kasimir Burgess, text and dialogue by Alexander Garcia Duttmann.

2001        The Book of Refused Words, Conservatory, St Kilda Botanical Gardens, Melbourne.

2000       The Four Horizons of the Page, Linden Gallery, Melbourne.




2016-17  Views for the FutureVol. 16 (bricolage), curator and master printer M.Matsumara, October, 2016 Gallery TEN, Tokyo-Yanaka; 9 Jan-9 Feb 2017 Art Space Mooni, Morioka, Japan.

2016        Animal/Human/Artist curated by Janine Burke, McClelland Gallery and Sculpture Park, Langwarrin,

2016        Sailing into History, curated by Lella Carridi, Museo Italiano, Carlton, Victoria, Australia.

2015         Creaturely Feelings, Dax Gallery, the University of Melbourne.

2014         Topoligies of Sexual Difference, curated by Caroline Philips, George Paton Gallery, Melbourne University.

2014         Lorne Sculpture Biennale, curated by Julie Collins, Lorne, Victoria.

2013          Animal culture/Human Culture for ‘The Body” exhibition, Langford 120, Melbourne

2012         Living Everyday by Art, Youkobo Art Space Tokyo, Japan

2012         Seeing Artists Books as Research, curated by Dr Anne Bennett, The Royal Society of Victoria

Heritage Library, Melbourne.

2012          Contemporary Australia Drawing, University of the Arts, London.

2011           Lorne Sculpture Biennale, Lorne, Victoria, Australia

2011          The Telepathy show: the Spanish Apartment curated by Veronica Kent, Australia Council studio, Barcelona.

2011          The Telepathy show curated by Veronica Kent, Westspace Gallery Melbourne. 

2011          Revisitation, La Trobe University gallery, Bendigo, Australia.

2010         Whirlwinds, curated by Jane Rendell, Bartlett School of Architecture UCL ,London.

2010          duetto,  AEAF /Queens Theatre, Adelaide.

2009          Drought: Cross Cultural Collaborations, Murray Darling Palimpsest, the Vault, Mildura, Australia.

2008          Drought: Cross Cultural Collaborations, with the Writers Festival, Federation Square, Melbourne.

2008           Ship of Fools Ship of Hope’, Yarra Sculpture Gallery, Melbourne.

2007           This Crazy Love, Linden Gallery, Melbourne.

2007           The Space Between, Margaret Lawrence Gallery VCA, touring exhibition, Melbourne.

2007            Distibution of Organic Beings: the snails, Toorak Invitational Sculpture exhibition, Melbourne.

2005            Making Conditions of Love, MARS Gallery, Melbourne.

2005            Jochen Gertz Die Anthology der Kunst,  Akademie der Kunste, Berlin & ZKM, Karlsruhe.

2004           For Nothing, the Bank, Midland, Western Australia.

2004           The Empress’s New Clothes L’Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival:Port Jackson Press Gallery, Melbourne.

2003           Makers Mark, Counihan Gallery Brunswick Town Hall, Melbourne.

2003           Oblique Shadows, Mornington Peninsula Gallery, Victoria.

2002           Milk River, Meru Art Gallery, Brooklyn, New York.

2002           Shirakawa-go Art Festival, Japan.

2002           Jochen Gertz Anthology of Art http://www.anthology-of-art.net, Centre Pompidou, Paris.

2002           Oblique Shadows, VCA Gallery, Melbourne.

2002           Transit Narratives, Villa Letizia, Italy.

2001            Grounds for Sculpture 1, McClelland Art Gallery, Langwarrin, Victoria.

2001            This Ocean Floor: A sculpture survey’, Goya Galleries, Melbourne.

2001            On the Cross, Linden Gallery, Melbourne, L’Oreal International Fashion Festival, Melbourne.

2000           Oblique Shadows, Sculpture Square, Singapore.

2000           Exquisite Corpse, Bendigo Art Gallery, Victoria.




2014            Visiting artist, Minzu University for the Ethnic minorities, Beijing, China.

2013            Artist in Residence, Pilchuck  Glass School, Seattle, USA

2013            Artist in Residence, Youkobo Art Space, Tokyo, Japan

2012            Artist in Residence, Youkobo Art Space,  Tokyo, Japan

2010            Research Fellowship, Five Colleges Women’s Research Centre, Mount Holyoke, Massachusetts USA.

2009            Visiting Artist, Sculpture Dept. Central Academy of Fine Art, Beijing.

2006-7        French Government (AFAA) 3-month residency, Cite International des Arts, Paris.

2002            Power Institute, Sydney University Scholarship; Australia Council, 6 months Cite des Arts, Paris.

2002            Artist-in-Residence, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, Singapore.




2017     Eyeline Journal, Carol Schwarzman ‘Presence and Non-Presence; Inside and Outside’, http://www.eyelinepublishing.com/issue/eyeline-86

2017     Art+Australia, Review: Animal/Human/Artist –Art inspired animals’, by Lynn Mowson, http://www.artandaustralia.com/online/discursions/review-human-animal-artist-art-inspired-animals  March 2017

2016      Review by Gabriella Coslovich, Spectrum section of The Age newspaper, 19 November, 2016.

2016     Human/Animals/Artist: Janine Burke’s Exhibition Explores the Lines Between’, Gabriella Coslovich, the Sydney

Morning Herald, Nov.18, 2016. http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/art-and-design/humananimalartist-janine-burkes-exhibition-explores-the-lines-in-between-20161111-gsnm8y.html

2016     Human/Animal / Artist, by Janine Burke, Catalogue, McClelland Gallery, Langwarrin, Victoria Australia.

2015     Anne-Gaelle Saliot, The Drowned Muse, Oxford University Press, UK(2015) pp. 17-19; pp. 326-328.

2014     Carol Schwarzman, ‘Review Lorne Sculpture Bienale’, Sculpture magazine, USA. Dec 2014 Vol 3 No. 10.

2014       Thomas Hirschhorn, ‘Letter to Elizabeth (Inventing my own terms)’, Critical Laboratory: The Writings of Thomas Hirschhorn, edited by Lisa Lee and Hal Foster, MIT Press, (2013) pp. 89-97.

2013  Alexander Garcia Duttmann, catalogue essay ‘The Spirit of the Beehive’ to accompany Apian Utopia’s exhibition, Westspace, Melbourne

2012   Alexander Garcia Duttmann, Screen Test 508 Catalogue ‘In Participation’ .

2010   Lisa Harms, Duetto review  , Art Link Vol 30, No3

2010    Alexander Garcia Duttmann, ,‘ Elizabeth and the Peacock’, Interior Castle catalogue, Linden Centre for Contemporary Art, ISBN 978-0-98065607-7

2010    Andrew Benjamin,  ‘Housing, Souling : Matter’s Force’, Interior Castle catalogue, Linden Centre for Contemporary Art, ISBN 978-0-98065607-7

2010   Geoffrey Bennington, Not Half No End, Edinburgh University Press, 2010. p. 165

2010    Andrew Benjamin, Writing Art and Architecture, Re. Press, 2010

2009  Jean-Luc Nancy, ‘L’Atlantide au milieu’ catalogue essay trans. Louise Burchill ISBN: 978-0-646-52275-3

2009  Andrew Benjamin ‘Placing Awaiting Objects’, catalogue essay ISBN: 978-0-646-52275-3

2009  Dimitris Vardoulakis “Beside(s): Elizabeth Presa with Jacques Derrida”, Derrida Today journal, Volume 2.

2009   Andrew Stephens, ‘Poetry Cast in Plaster’ Interview, ‘The Age’ newspaper, A2, October 24

2007   Delia Falconer, Phantasmagoria, Book reviews ‘The Australian’ newspaper, April 7.

2006   Gerald l. Bruns,  After Blanchot: Literature, Criticism, Philosophy, University of Notre Dame Philosophical Review.

2006    Gail Jones, A Shape, If Only A Shape, Australian Book Review, August 2006 No. 283

2006     Jean-Luc Nancy, Calculation of the Rainbow, ‘Attention: Fragile’, catalogue essay.

2006     Breath’, photo essay, Mosaic journal, special issue After Derrida, volume 39, number 3

2006     Dimitris Vardoulakis, Critical text for ‘Calculation of the Rainbow’

2005     Andrew Benjamin, ‘There in the Vanishing’ catalogue ISBN 0646451065

2005     Jean-Luc Nancy, ‘Medusa–Jelly’, catalogue ISBN 0646451065

2005     Ian McLean, ‘For Nothing’ Artlink, Vol 25,#1;

2004     Simon Blond “Nothing in the Bank” Arts, Western Australian 24 December.

2004     Domenico de Clario ‘For Nothing’ catalogue, the Bank, Midlands, Perth

2004     Alexander Garçia Düttmann, chapter in Verwisch die Spuren, Berlin: Merve Verlag 2005.

2004     Penny Web, Review ‘Karen Lunn and Elizabeth Presa’ in The Age newspaper, March 17

2003      Julie Chandler Hayes “The Body of the Letter: Epistolary Acts of Simon Hantai, Jean-Luc Nancy, and Jacques Derrida” University of Richmond, Virginia Muse issue 503/13.3                                                                  

2003      Japan Cultural Centre Archive Project, Japan Foundation Sydney.

2002      Jochen Gerz’s Anthology of Art http://www.anthology–of-art.net

2001       Jacques Derrida, La Connaissance des Textes,  Editions Galilée,  pp.155-6

2001       ‘World Sculpture News’, volume 7 number 2 p. 63;

2001        Kevin Hart, ‘Horizons and Folds’ http://www.usyd.edu.au /contretemps. Contretemps: an online journal of philosophy, February.

2000         Sian E Jay Catalogue ‘Oblique Shadows’

2000         Sian E Jay ‘The Straits Times’, Singapore, ‘ Arts’, 22 November.

2000         Robert Nelson ‘Paper Trail’ Art Review  ‘The Age’, 2 August.

2000         Australian Campus Review, 10-16 May.


PUBLICATIONS by Elizabeth Presa


PRESA.,E.P. ‘Ways of Being’, The Winnicott Tradition: Lines of Development, Eds. Margaret Boyle Sepleman and Frances Thomson-Salo, Karnac Books, London [2014].

PRESA.,E.P.  The Evolution of do it, do it the compendium, Eds.,Hans Ulrich Obrist and Kate Fowle, ISBN: 978-1-938922-01-5, pp. 423-436, D.A.P/Distributed at Publishers INC: New York [2013]

PRESA.,E.P. – Matters of Fact, Architectural theory Review, vol. 17 No.1 April 2012. Routledge, pp.134-139. [2012] ISSN 1326-4826

PRESA., E.P. -Breath, Mosaic Journal, “After Derrida”, Vol. 39 No.3 September October, Manitoba University, Canada: pp. 69 –79. [2006]

PRESA., E.P – White Work. Beyond Blanchot: Literature, Criticism, Philosophy’, eds. Leslie Hill, Brian Nelson, Dimitris Vardoulakis,  University of Delaware: Pp.257-269. [2006]

PRESA., E.P. – Establishing a Research Culture in a College for the Arts. Innovation in Australian Arts, Media and Design, eds Rod Whissler Brad Hasseman,  QUT Press.  pp. 171-180. [2004]

PRESA., E.P. -‘He said…’  volume 24 Number 1&2 2005, ISSN 01118889 ‘Access: Critical Perspectives on Communication, Cultural & Policy Studies’. Ed. Elizabeth Grierson. Pp.99 [2005]

PRESA., E.P.- ‘Diary’ Parallax, Routledge, vol. 9, no.3, Ed. Alexander Garcia Duttmann. pp.69 – 74.  [2003]




2013           Artist in Residence talk, Pilchuck Glass School, USA.

2013           Floor talk, Westspace Gallery, Melbourne

2013           Floor talk, Youkobo Art Space, Tokyo

2011             Freezing Images,  The International conference on the Image, San Sebastian, Spain

2011            ‘Post-partum images’ Cunningham Dax Centre for Psychiatric Art, University of Melbourne

2010            ‘Teresa of Avila; materializing an Interior Castle’ Mount Holyoke College Mass, USA.

2009            ‘Making it Visible’ Provosts Summit, University of Melbourne.

2009            ‘Auguste Rodin’ Key Thinkers, University of Melbourne.

2009            Keynote address for ‘Interdisciplinary, Multidisciplinary, Post Disciplinary, Art and Education in the

                            21st Century’ conference and sculpture workshop EWHA Womans University, Seoul, South Korea.

2009            ‘Sewing with Derrida’ National Gallery of Victoria.

2009            ‘Slow Sculpture’ Central Academy of Fine Art, Beijing.

2009            ‘Slow Sculpture’ AAH conference, Manchester.

2008            ‘Image and the Sacred: Jean-Luc Nancy’, Out of Bounds: Art,Faith and Religiosity, Monash University

2007            Art Forum, RMIT.

2007            ‘From Day to Day’, Hospitality and Mourning’ conference, University of Queensland.

2007            ‘Work of Mourning’ Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne School of Psychoanalysis.

2007            ‘Sculpting the Mind’ in The Mind in Art, Psychiatry and the Consulting Room conference, Melbourne

School of Psychoanalysis, VCA, Melbourne.

2007            Presentation at Research for Early Career Researchers, University of Melbourne.

2007            Guest lecture PhD Research Programme, Department of Visual; Cultures, Goldsmiths College,

University of London.

2006            ‘Spinoza’s Work’, Wandering with Spinoza Conference, The Victorian College of the Arts.

2005            ‘At the Centre of Ideas?’ Key Note address, Interdisciplinarity in the  Arts Conference, Korean National

University of Arts, Seoul, South Korea.

2005            ‘Making White work’ University of Paris VII, Denis Diderot, Paris.

2004            ‘White Work’ Blanchot the Obscure International Conference, Monash University & Alliance Francaise,

2004            White Light. Alliance Magazine, June-August, Alliance Francaise de Melbourne.

2003            ‘Diary: Elizabeth Presa’ Parallax, Routledge, 2003, vol. 9, no. 3, pp.69- 74.

2003            Censorship and Artistic Expression “Snapshot” Arts Management Forum, Melbourne.

2003            Interview commenting upon art as social critique and protest. SBS Radio.

2002            Artist’s floor talk, Meru Art, Brooklyn, NY, USA.

2002            ‘Pedagogy and the Arts’, Public lecture, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, Singapore.

2002            Interview, commenting on the role of an education in the Arts, Radio, Singapore, 11 January 5.30pm.

2002            ‘Forming texuality’, lecture, LaSalle SIA, Singapore.

2002            ‘Installation as art practice’, seminar Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, Singapore.

2001            ‘Four Horizons of the Page’, lecture, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY. USA.

2001            Four Horizons of the Page’, lecture, Purchase College SUNY, NY. USA.

2000            ‘Poetics of the Book in Sculpture’ lecture, National Academy of Fine Art, Singapore.

2000            ‘Derrida and the Poetics of translation’ Monash University, Australia.

2000            Artists floor talk, ‘The Four Horizons of the Page’ Linden Gallery, Melbourne.

1999            Together with Jacques Derrida, interview by Lyn Gallagher, PM, Radio National, 10 August.

1999            Lecture, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn NY; lecture Purchase College, State University of New York.




2012    Animals in Art and Philosophy symposium with Peter Singer, Andrew Benjamin and Raimond Gaita.

2009     ‘Paul Cox, Miracle Maker’,  VCAM, University of Melbourne.

2009      ‘do it’: the Philosophy archive, with Hans Ulrich Obrist, Susan Hewitt and Sandie Bridie, The George Paton

Gallery University of Melbourne.

2009       Journey to the Surface of the Earth , with Elliot Howard, Domain House Royal Botanic Gardens,


2008      ‘do it’ with Hans Ulrich Obrist,  and students from the Central Academy of Fine Art

Beijing, Alliance Francais de Melbourne.

2007     ‘do it’ with Hans Ulrich Obrist,  VCA Margaret Lawrence Gallery Melbourne.

2006     ‘Wandering with Spinoza’ conference, with Dimitris Vardoulakis. Key Note speakers Alain Badiou

Thomas Hirschhorn, Mieke Bal, Andrew Benjamin, Alexander Garcia Duttmann, Christopher Norris.

2005     Making Conditions of Love, exhibition MARS Gallery, Port Melbourne.

2004     White Light, exhibition  Blanchot the Obscure Conference, Monash Univ & Alliance Francaise, Melbourne.

2003     The Art of Protest,  Symposium, BMW Edge Theatre Federation Square, with Julian Burside, Jill Singer,

Bishop Hilton Deakin, Dr Tony Birch.

2000     The Poetics of the Book, interdisciplinary project with VCA students and international artists, academics:

Dr. Catherine Malabou (Paris); Dr Yau Suchou (Singapore/Sydney); Kevin Hart (Melb); Domenico

DeClario (Brazil/Melb); Bernard Muir (UoM).

1999     Blowing Glas, Jacques Derrida Prize and Exhibition, VCA Gallery, Melbourne. With  Jacques Derrida, Kevin

Hart,  Mike Parr & Janet Burchill.

1997    Art and Reconciliation,   symposium, Melbourne Festival. Speakers: Colin Tatz, Henry Reynolds,

Joy Murphy, Raimond Gaita, Philip Morrissey, Bishop Hilton Deakin, and Senator Margaret Reynolds.

1997   Originality, Dependence and Deceit,  symposium VCA University of Melbourne.  Speakers: Peter Steele

Alexander Garcia Düttmann,  Paul Thom, Kevin Hart, Vivienne Johnson.

1997     Patronage and the Arts,   VCA symposium.  Speakers: Margaret Manion, Mike Parr, Patrick McCaughey,

Bill Kent, Judith Ryan.