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Art Collection Management Rule

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Section 1 - Overview

(1) The University of New England acquires works of art through purchase, commission, donation and bequest. The UNE Art Collection is a significant asset because of its historical, aesthetic, educational and research significance as well as its monetary value.

(2) The UNE Art Collection includes Fine Art, Art Reproductions and Public Art.

(3) Effective management of the UNE Art Collection is an obligation of ownership. The purpose of this Rule is to establish controls and processes for the acquisition, preservation, presentation, documentation and deaccessioning of the UNE Art Collection.

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Section 2 - Scope

(4) All works of Art, including Fine Art, Art Reproductions and Public Art, acquired through purchase, commission, donation or bequest by any part of the University, including Faculties Schools, Institutes, Centres, Departments, Colleges, wholly owned subsidiaries and all other entities, are acquired in the name of the University and fall within the scope of this Rule.

(5) This Rule includes Fine Art, Art Reproductions and Public Art located in all areas of the following sites:

  1. Armidale Academic Campus;
  2. Armidale Bellevue Campus;
  3. CB Newling Campus;
  4. Tablelands Clinical School;
  5. Future Campus Parramatta;
  6. Regional Study Centres; and
  7. Any other buildings and sites managed by the University of New England

(6) University Representatives must comply with this Rule.

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Section 3 - Rule

Roles and Responsibilities

Heritage Centre

(7) The UNE Heritage Centre oversees the documentation, display and preservation of the UNE Art Collection through the UNE Art Collection Manager.

(8) The UNE Art Collection Manager is responsible for the Collection's:

  1. Presentation, display and handling;
  2. Preservation, storage and conservation; and
  3. Record keeping, stocktakes and audits.

(9) The Art Collection Manager:

  1. Is the single point of contact on all matters relating to the documentation, display and conservation of the Art Collection; and
  2. Is to be notified of any change that requires updating of the Art Collection Register, including acquisition and movement of any artwork.

UNE Art Advisory Committee

(10) All significant acquisitions, policies, rules and strategic plans that impact on the development and management of the UNE Art Collection will be tabled at the UNE Art Advisory Committee.


(11) The UNE Art Collection has been established:

  1. To develop a significant collection of, principally, Australian works of art for the study, patronage and advancement of the arts;
  2. To demonstrate the University's commitment to the community by acquiring and displaying the work of New England artists, artists who have worked in the region, as well as art which reflects themes of importance or relevance to the region;
  3. For the purposes of education including by means of exhibitions;
  4. For the purposes of research;
  5. To acquire works of art of demonstrable significance and excellence within the perceived development and relationship of art to contemporary life; and
  6. To acquire works of art suitable for the purpose of enhancing the public areas of the University.

Public Art

(12) The University will acquire Public Art as part of its goal to provide 'a high quality student experience'. In pursuit of this goal it will:

  1. Recognise the role of Public Art in creating distinctive precincts on the campus and include Public Art in the University's masterplan and landscape plan;
  2. Seek to include Public Art at the project planning stage for existing building refurbishments and new capital works;
  3. Review proposals for Public Art acquisitions which are not part of a building refurbishment or capital works project, as part of its normal budgetary process; and
  4. Always seek expert advice from the Art Collection Manager in planning for, and commissioning, Public Art.

(13) The Art Collection Manager will assist in the implementation of these objectives by:

  1. Providing expert advice to UNE Facilities Management Services, and other relevant entities, on planning for and commissioning Public Art;
  2. Working collaboratively with UNE Facilities Management Services, and other relevant entities, to identify opportunities, including potential sites, for public Art; and
  3. Developing Public Art projects.

Criteria for Public Art Acquisitions

(14) In acquiring Public Art it is:

  1. Mandatory that the work embodies artistic excellence, originality and integrity, is designed to take account of risk management and safety considerations and fulfils at least two of the following criteria:
    1. Contributes to a precinct's identity;
    2. Responds to the built and natural environment;
    3. Interprets the history of the University of New England;
    4. Improves the amenity of public spaces on campus and promotes opportunities for social interaction; and
    5. Acknowledges the cultural diversity of staff and students and explores cultural diversity.
  2. Desirable that the work is constructed using sustainable materials and processes, be durable and require low maintenance.

Maintenance Guidelines for Public Art

(15) Public Art, including monuments, sculptures and water features in the public domain, is subject to wear and tear and degradation over time. In commissioning new works, the artist should provide a maintenance schedule outlining any special requirements for cleaning, maintenance and servicing.

Donations, gifts and bequests

(16) The UNE Art Collection Manager has the authority to accept or decline gifts of works valued at up to $5000.

(17) The decision to accept the gift of works with an individual value greater than $5000 will be made by the Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive Officer after considering the recommendation of the UNE Art Advisory Committee.

(18) Clear title is required for all artworks permanently acquired and a Deed of Gift must be completed by the donor or executor.

(19) Title will pass to the University and not to any individual or organisational unit. However, the stated wishes of a donor that an artwork be given in favour of a particular Faculty, School, Institute, Centre, Unit or College will be acknowledged.

(20) All donations will be reported to the Office of Advancement.

Commissions and Sponsorship

(21) The commissioning or sponsorship of artworks by UNE will be determined by the Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive Officer after considering the recommendation of the UNE Art Advisory Committee.

(22) The commissioning of official portraits by UNE will be undertaken upon the recommendation and approval of the UNE Council.


(23) The procurement of all artwork will be conducted in accordance with the University's procurement policies and procedures.

(24) The UNE Art Collection Manager must be:

  1. Notified of all purchases;
  2. Provided with a copy of purchase invoices and any related material; and
  3. Given access to the artwork for documentation.

Deaccessioning and Disposal

(25) The Collection will be subject to periodic review.

(26) UNE reserves the right to dispose of works as a necessary part of developing the collection to its fullest potential and of responsible collection management.

(27) UNE will always approach the disposal of works with caution. Full records will be kept of any object disposed of and the basis on which the decision to dispose of the object was made.

(28) Works which have deteriorated beyond repair and/or pose a Workplace Health and Safety risk may be disposed of.

(29) Public Art Works may be disposed of where the cost of on-going maintenance is prohibitive or where they are part of the fabric of a building, or component of a building, which is scheduled for demolition and the cost of relocating the work is prohibitive.

(30) All works apart from those found to be dangerous, hazardous or broken beyond repair, are subject to a six-month cooling off period before the deaccession and disposal can be processed.

(31) UNE will observe any legal conditions pertaining to its right of disposal and disposal will comply with established University asset disposal policies.

(32) Deaccessioning will be in accordance with the Museums Australia Code of Ethics for Art, Science and History Museums.

(33) Any monies received from the proceeds from the disposal of works should be applied solely for the upgrading of the collection either by purchase or conservation.


(34) The University may lend works from its art collection to outside agencies and may accept internal loans of works. Recommendations to approve or reject such loans will be made by the UNE Art Collection Manager.

(35) The UNE Art Collection Manager may authorise internal and external loans of artwork to the value of $20,000. The loan of artwork valued over $20,000 must be approved by the Vice-Chancellor.

(36) The UNE Art Collection Manager can request inter-campus loans from Faculties, Schools, Institutes, Centres, Units and Colleges for temporary on-Campus exhibitions.


(37) Works of art from the Collection will be displayed across UNE Campuses for the benefit of the UNE community and visitors to the University.

(38) University Representatives should seek assistance and advice from the UNE Art Collection Manager in the appropriate display of artworks in their areas.

(39) Artworks are displayed only in areas that meet appropriate aesthetic, environmental and security standards. The UNE Art Collection Manager is authorised to remove any artwork determined to be at risk.

(40) Works of art on display must not be moved or removed without prior approval from the UNE Art Collection Manager.

(41) Staff may display privately-owned works of art in their offices but do so at their own risk. Privately-owned artworks introduced into the campus by staff must be clearly marked with the owner's name. Proof of ownership may be requested by the Art Collection Manager. The University accepts no responsibility for theft, damage or destruction of any privately-owned work introduced by staff onto the campus.


(42) The UNE Art Collection Manager shall advise UNE Director Finance of the valuation history of the art collection annually and make recommendations as to priorities for the revaluation of works.


(43) The UNE Art Collection Manager shall advise the UNE Insurance Officer of the valuation history of the art collection annually. The UNE Insurance Officer is responsible for ensuring appropriate insurance cover is in place.

(44) The Art Collection Manager is responsible for notifying the UNE Insurance Office of all proposed outgoing and incoming loans to and from external parties while the UNE Insurance Officer is responsible for ensuring appropriate insurance cover is in place on those articles.


(45) The conservation of the UNE Art Collection will take precedence in all decisions regarding display, loan or exhibition. The following will apply in regards to conservation:

  1. All artworks will be regularly inspected and their condition assessed;
  2. The collection will be maintained, stored, handled and displayed in accordance with sound art collection management practices;
  3. The Art Collection Manager will remove artwork from display to temporary storage on a regular basis to increase the longevity of the work;
  4. The Art Collection Manager may remove artwork from display for conservation treatment;
  5. The Art Collection Manager may remove artwork permanently from display if it is determined that the work can no longer be safely exhibited; and
  6. The repair and maintenance of artworks can only be undertaken at the direction and authority of the Art Collection Manager.


(46) All artwork in the permanent collection and all loans must be properly documented. The Art Collection Manager will be responsible for the documentation of artwork in accordance with the conventions of art registration and recordkeeping and in accordance with the requirements of the University's Asset Management and Records Management Rules. The collection of personal information will conform to the University's Privacy Management Rule.

(47) Artwork records will include:

  1. A photograph and description of each work;
  2. A unique registration number; and
  3. All appropriate provenance records such as purchase invoices and receipts, deeds of gift, and donor or executor letters.

(48) Artwork records will acknowledge;

  1. The artist's right to be attributed as the creator of the work and, unless otherwise assigned, the holder of copyright; and
  2. The donor's right to receive appropriate acknowledgement and recognition.

Authority and Compliance

(49) The Vice-Chancellor, pursuant to Section 29 of the University of New England Act, makes this a University Rule.

(50) University Representatives must observe it in relation to University matters.

(51) The Rule Administrator is authorised to make procedures and guidelines for the operation of this University Rule. The procedures and guidelines must be compatible with the provisions of this Rule.

(52) This Rule operates as and from the Effective Date.

(53) The previous policy on Art Collection Management and related documents are replaced and have no further operation from the Effective Date of this new Rule.

(54) Notwithstanding the other provisions of this University Rule, the Vice-Chancellor may approve an exception to this Rule where the Vice-Chancellor determines the application of the Rule would otherwise lead to an unfair, unreasonable or absurd outcome. Approvals by the Vice-Chancellor under this clause must be documented in writing and must state the reason for the exception.

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Section 4 - Definitions

(55) A Deed of Gift is the instrument by which the ownership of an artwork is transferred from a donor to the University.

(56) Effective Date is the date on which this Rule will take effect.

(57) Public Art include sculptures, murals, mosaics and fountains. It may be located in public places such as the grounds and on the outside of buildings in UNE's Campuses and Colleges or incorporated into the public areas of buildings such as libraries, administration and student centres, lecture theatres, foyers and corridors.

(58) Senior Management means staff at Head of School/Director level and above.

(59) The Rule administrator is the Vice-Chancellor or delegate.

(60) UNE Art Advisory Committee: the UNE Art Advisory Committee is a committee of the University that advises and makes recommendations to the Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive Officer on matters relating to the acquisition, commissioning and sponsorship of artworks for the University.

(61) UNE Art Collection means all original 2 and 3 dimensional works of art, Limited edition prints and fine art reproductions and Public Art purchased, commissioned, donated or bequested to UNE and its predecessor institutions, the New England University College, the Armidale Teacher's College and the Armidale College of Advanced Education, which have been formally accessioned into the collection and for which title has been transferred to the University.

(62) UNE Act means the University of New England Act 1993 No 68 (NSW).

(63) University Representative means a University employee (casual, fixed term and permanent) contractor, agent, appointee, UNE Council member, adjunct, visiting academic and any other person engaged by the University to undertake some activity for or on behalf of the University. It includes corporations and other bodies falling into one or more of these categories.