Watt Space moved from its birthplace on Watt Street to University House on the corner of King and Auckland Streets in 1996. It now stands monolithic as an art gallery which offers students unparalleled opportunities to develop and extend their professional practice at both the undergraduate and postgraduate level. The environment is nurturing, however the expectations on student exhibitors and volunteers are equitable to those found in other professionally run galleries. Exhibiting, curating and gallery administration all form part of the Watt Space experience and it serves as an invaluable educational resource.
Watt Space is funded by UoN Services Limited, formerly the SRC. However in 2005 the certainty of funding was threatened when compulsory student service fees were abolished by the then Howard government. Since then UoN Services Limited has adapted by consolidating its operations at the university, always ensuring that Watt Space was and is financially supported as its premier student facility and service.
It was the vision, dedication and guile of the originating management committee of Jacquie Henderson, Bryan Bulley and George Drewery who laid the foundations for what Watt Space is today. We are forever indebted to their pioneering efforts. So as we look to the future and to the next twenty years, we hope that Watt Space continues to build upon its national reputation as a respected student art gallery, but also that we continue to maintain an independent stance, never afraid of asserting and insisting on our right to exist.
Excerpt of essay by Luke Johnston, Fiona Lee and Claire Parker. The Student Representatives of the 2009 Watt Space Management Committee.
Gallery opening hours
Watt Space Gallery is open from 11am – 5pm Wednesday to Sunday or by appointment.
The Watt Space Management Committee is formed of nine representatives, three each from the student body, the University of Newcastle and UoN Services Limited.
The executive positions are occupied by the three student representatives who retain those positions for twelve months. Nominations for these positions from students currently enrolled are called for each October with elections run in November in accordance with UoN Services Limited ballot regulations.
The three University staff representatives are staff members from the discipline of Fine Art within the School of Creative Arts. UoN Services Limited nominates three staff members for the Committee: the Manager of Watt Space, the Member Services Manager and a Finance representative.
The Watt Space Management Committee meets approximately every six weeks from March until December.
Watt Space would like the thank outgoing Fine Art Representative Jonathan James. We wish Jonathan all best for the future.
Senior Manager Student Life
Manager, Watt Space
Management Accountant (Bus Support)
Fine Art Representatives
Dr Angela Philp
Senior Lecturer, Art History and Theory, University of Newcastle
Technical Officer, Photomedia, University of Newcastle