Catherine holds a Masters of Arts (by research) with First Class Honours from the University of Melbourne (2012) and a Bachelor of Applied Science in Painting Conservation from the University of Canberra (1998).

Catherine’s career has been based in both Australia and the UK, with a period spent working at the Auckland Art Gallery in New Zealand. In Australia, she worked in painting conservation positons at the National Gallery of Victoria, Artlab Australia and the Ian Potter Art Conservation Centre. From 2003-5 she undertook a two-year Advanced Internship in the Conservation of Easel Paintings at the Hamilton Kerr Institute, University of Cambridge, UK, where she specialised in the treatment of European paintings on canvas and panel. Catherine returned to Australia to take up her position at the GCCMC in 2007.

In 2015, Catherine was based in the UK for second period, working as Acting Head of Painting Conservation at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, where she treated a large 15th Century Italian altarpiece by Botticelli for the Botticelli: Reimagined exhibition at the V&A in 2016.

Catherine has also worked as a Freelance painting conservator in London in 2005-6 and 2015-2016, treating paintings from important UK private collections and large public collections, including The National Trust. Catherine is a specialist in complex retouching projects, and has experience in the structural treatment of European panel paintings.

Catherine’s main research interest is the technical analysis of paintings, particularly those of the Impressionist period. Her MA dissertation explored the materials and techniques of the post-Impressionist artist, E. Phillips Fox (1865 – 1915). She has also undertaken technical analysis on paintings ranging from a 13th Century Italian altarpiece, French Impressionist and 17th Century Dutch paintings. Her publications are listed below.


Member, Australian Institute for the Conservation of Cultural Materials (AICCM)

Standard member, International Council of Museums (ICOM)

Grants and Awards

  • 2008 Gordon Darling Foundation Travel Grant, Melbourne, Australia
  • 2008 Ian Potter Foundation Travel and Conference Grant, Melbourne, Australia
  • 2005 Fellow, Cambridge Commonwealth Society, Cambridge, UK
  • 2004 South Australian Young Achiever Awards Finalist, Adelaide, Australia
  • 2003/4 Ruth Tuck Visual Arts Scholarship recipient, Adelaide, Australia
  • 2003-5 Cambridge Commonwealth Society Scholarship recipient, Cambridge, UK
  • 2003 Ian Potter Cultural Trust Grant, Melbourne, Australia


Book Chapters

  • Nunn, C "Less slick and not so clever' The materials and techniques of the Foxes', in Goddard, A. et al. 2011, Art, Life & Love: Ethel Carrick and E. Phillips Fox, Exhibition Catalogue for the exhibition Art Life & Love: Ethel Carrick & E. Phillips Fox, 16 April - 7 August 2011, Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane, pp 122-127.

Journal Articles (*Refereed Journals)

  • *Nunn, C. 2009 'Doing battle in China, Holland, Norfolk and Cambridge: The treatment of a large painting from a country house collection, Simon de Vlieger's Blockade of Amoy (1650)' AICCM Bulletin, 2009, pp. 92 - 100.
  • *Nunn, C 'The conservation history of an eighteenth-century collection: caring for the pictures of the Foundling Hospital' Journal of the Institute of Conservation, Vol. 32, No. 2, 2009, pp. 233-247.
  • Nunn, C and Kowalski, V 'Saving Sir Walter Baldwin Spencer: The conservation of a 20th Century painting' University of Melbourne Collections Magazine, Issue 4, June 2009, pp. 51-52.
  • *Nunn, C 'The Making of Lamplight (1911) A preliminary study of the methods and materials of E Phillips Fox'AICCM Bulletin, No.31, 2008, pp 15-27.
  • *Fry, C., Kowalski, V. and Nunn, C. 2009 '"Landscape in Miniature" - The use of the gum leaf as a painting support in colonial Victoria,' Melbourne Journal of Technical Studies in Art - Supports, Volume III, (accepted December 2008, in press).

Conference Proceedings (*Refereed Journals)

  • Bancroft, A., Nunn, C., and Richardson, C. 2016 ‘The Conservation of Two 19th Century Thai Buddhist Banner Paintings in a secular museum’, 8th International Lay Buddhist Forum (ILBF): Caring for the past, safeguarding the future: Buddhism, Heritage and Sustainability Preprints, 19-23 August 2016, Buddhayana, Padang Sidempuan, North Sumatra Indonesia.
  • *Nunn, C ‘Conservation issues and the use of absorbent supports in the works of E. Phillips Fox (1865-1915)’, ICOM-CC 17th Triennial Conference Preprints, Melbourne, 15-19 September 2014, ed. J. Bridgland, art.1311, 8 pp. Paris: International Council of Museums.
  • Nunn, C 'Benign neglect and Australian Conservation History' Paintings Conservation in Australia from the Nineteenth Century to the Present: Connecting the Past to the Future - Contributions to the Eleventh AICCM Paintings Group Symposium, 9-10 October 2008, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, pp 1-10.
  • *Nunn, C 'The treatment of an un-lined eighteenth Century British painting in Australia' extended abstract published in Conservation and Access Contributions to the IIC London Congress, 15-19 September 2008, International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works, London 2008, p. 248.

Web Material

Press Articles

  • Nunn, C 'Review of the London 2008 IIC Congress' AICCM National Newsletter, No. 109, December 2008, p. 20-21.
  • Nunn, C 'Working in the UK: an Australian's personal experience' AICCM National Newsletter, No. 95, June 2005, p. 5-6.
  • Nunn, C 'SAYAB Artist Profile - Winner of the Ruth Tuck Scholarship' SAYarts The South Australian Youth Arts Board Round-up, January-June 2005, p. 6.


  • Nunn, C 'The treatment of an un-lined eighteenth Century British painting in Australia' in Conservation and Access Contributions to the IIC London Congress, 15-19 September 2008, International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works, London 2008.

Exhibition Material

  • Nunn, C and Phillips, J 'The Materials and Techniques of E. Phillips Fox' Perspectives-Conservation and the Art of Investigation Ian Potter Museum of Art 24 November-27 February 2002.

Master of Arts by Research Thesis

  • Nunn, C 2012 ‘The matte aesthetic and the art of E. Phillips Fox (1865-1915)’, Master of Arts by Research thesis, awarded 2012, Faculty of Arts, University of Melbourne