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Tag: Australian art

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Spowers & Syme

Tuesday, January 24th, 2023 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

Spowers & Syme may sound like a firm of accountants, but we’re dealing with an entirely different order of creativity. Ethel Spowers (1890-1947), and Eveline Syme (1888-1961), were groundbreaking Australian artists at a time when women found it difficult to make any impression on an art scene dominated by self-confident and self-serving males. A touring […]

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One Week in the Pilbara

Saturday, January 7th, 2023 Blog,

“What do you think of the Pilbara?” asked the hotel manager in Newman. “A lot of red dirt?” The immediate answer was: “Yes. A vast, seemingly endless expanse of red dirt, criss-crossed by trains carrying identically formed hillocks of iron ore. The trains stretch for kilometres at a time. You see them on the horizon, […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

2022 and Beyond

Monday, January 2nd, 2023 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

There’s been plenty to think about in 2022, including war in the Ukraine, a looming global recession and floods along the north coast, but if one had to nominate Australia’s most momentous event of the year it would have to be the change of government. Whether this was equally momentous for the visual arts remains […]

Journals

Fred Williams, Werribee Gorge (10)(1977-78)

Friday, December 16th, 2022 Journals,

By the time he discovered Werribee Gorge, in 1977, Fred Williams had nothing left to prove. He was the country’s leading landscape painter, and one of the most highly respected figures in Australian art. He sat on the Acquisitions Committee of the Australian National Gallery, as it was then known, and had served as a […]

Journals

Jeffrey Smart, Study I for Bus Terminus (1972-73)

Friday, December 16th, 2022 Journals,

A painting by Jeffrey Smart might begin with a sudden epiphany, a flash of inspiration found by the side of the road. Smart would make a quick sketch, and maybe a snapshot, then store the motif on an imaginary shelf, awaiting its day in the studio. At this point, the hard work would begin. An […]

Journals

Jeffrey Smart, Ticket Boxes, Catania (1964)

Friday, December 16th, 2022 Journals,

There’s a peculiar melancholy about an empty space designed to accommodate a crowd. Anybody who has ever visited a resort town out-of-season can testify to the sense of desolation one feels in such places, in which shops, restaurants and hotels are geared to the needs of tourists and pleasure-seekers. The brazen trappings of the leisure […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Sydney Modern Opens at Last

Tuesday, December 6th, 2022 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

According to Premier, Dominic Perrottet, Sydney’s newest cultural attraction is set to be not only the greatest gallery in Australia, but the greatest in the world. Forget about the Louvre, the Met or the Prado, here’s Sydney Modern! This informed and thoughtful opinion was largely echoed by the other speakers at the media preview, with […]

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Nicholas Harding 1956 – 2022

Friday, November 11th, 2022 Blog,

When Nicholas Harding was awarded the 2022 Wynne Prize for landscape, one sensed it wasn’t simply a vote for a single painting, but for a lifetime’s achievement. This is not to detract from that winning canvas, Eora, a vast bushland scene, almost 2 by 4 metres – a scale that might have intimidated most artists, […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Sculpture by the Sea 2022

Tuesday, October 25th, 2022 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

There may be no better indicator that Sydney has shaken off its COVID-19 anxieties than a new installment of Sculpture by the Sea. This wildly popular event went missing during the pandemic, but is set for a triumphant return, as crowds gather on the foreshores between Bondi and Tamarama to pick up where they left […]

Sydney Morning Herald Column

Cressida Campbell

Tuesday, October 11th, 2022 Sydney Morning Herald Column,

If there were ever an exhibition to silence the doubters and vanquish the sceptics, this is it. Director Nick Mitzevich says there were some at the National Gallery of Australia who couldn’t understand why he wanted to do a Cressida Campbell show. Surely, she’s just a still life artist, a maker of pretty pictures for […]