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Sydney Morning Herald Column

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Art Basel Hong Kong 2019

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2019 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

“They really exhibit all the nice stuff here,” said Amy Lo, Head of Wealth Management at UBS Hong Kong, by way of justifying the Swiss bank’s continuing sponsorship of Art Basel Hong Kong. That statement might serve as a succinct review of this year’s fair, but it’s actually a bit more complicated. In the whirlwind […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Hans and Nora Heysen

Friday, March 29th, 2019 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

There’s a study to be written on artists who are the son or daughter of an already famous artist. In Australia there are many examples but the best story is that of Hans Heysen and his fourth daughter, Nora. This relationship is explored in Hans and Nora Heysen: Two Generations of Australian Art, at the […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Janet Laurence: After Nature

Thursday, March 21st, 2019 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

“What need has nature of thought, of care?” asked Confucius in the 5thC. BCE. “Plenty” is the answer he’d receive today, as we struggle with the effects of global warming, deforrestation, salination, loss of species and habitat. In the so-called ‘Anthropocene’ era nature needs all the help it can get. Having worked so dilgently to […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Quilty

Wednesday, March 13th, 2019 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

It’s often said that having a lot of enemies must mean you’re doing something right. Ben Quilty discovered long ago that the price of fame for an artist is the undying enmity of a large proportion of one’s peers. This hasn’t put the brakes on his glorious ascent but neither has it left him unscarred. […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Hassall Collection

Thursday, March 7th, 2019 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Last week I had occasion to reflect at length on that strange beast, the art collector. The immediate stimulus was a talk at Artspace during a private view of the Michael Hobbs Collection. The late Michael Hobbs was a mainstay of the Sydney art scene for many decades, and his children are honouring his legacy […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Perth Festival Art 2019

Thursday, February 28th, 2019 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

In 2018 the Art Gallery of Western Australia chose to opt out of the Perth Festival. This year AGWA has made an impressive comeback with Desert River Sea: Portraits of the Kimberley – the stand-out event in the 2019 visual arts program. It’s an exhibition that has been six years in the making, and the […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Heaven and Earth in Chinese Art

Friday, February 22nd, 2019 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Instead of asking: “How are you?”, the Chinese might greet you with words: “Have you eaten?” If ever one required confirmation of the Chinese love of food please note that the most famous and popular works in the National Palace Museum, Taipei, are two miraculous carvings: one of a cabbage, the other a piece of […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Minimalism.Space.Light.Object.

Thursday, February 14th, 2019 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Singapore’s National Gallery is in that honeymoon phase the National Gallery of Australia enjoyed in its early days. Inaugural director, Eugene Tan, has encouraged his curators to set the agenda, resulting in a highly original series of exhibitions exploring the art of South-East Asia and its relationship to the rest of the world. The Gallery […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Love & Desire: Pre-Raphaelite Masterpieces from the Tate

Friday, February 8th, 2019 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Exhibition titles are of the same order of marketing as those advertisements that claim by signing up for some course you can make millions or learn to speak another language in two weeks. Naturally if you don’t succeed it’s always your own fault. So when we come across a show titled Love & Desire: Pre-Raphaelite […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Destination Sydney re-imagined

Thursday, January 31st, 2019 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

In summer 2015 three of the city’s leading public galleries combined forces to stage an exhibition called Destination Sydney, bringing together work by nine prominent local artists, past and present. Although it would be hard to think of a less inspiring title the show seemed to work. At the very least it worked well enough […]