landscape

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Euan Macleod: The Shadow Line

May 22, 2012

Euan Macleod may be a landscape painter but it often seems as if the physical world is not his principle focus. Although he may stand for hours painting en plein air; although his pictures may reflect the recognisable features of a particular place, Macleod’s true subject is to be found within his own mind. The … More


Elisabeth Cummings

January 21, 2012

A recent press release from the National Gallery of Australia announces an exhibition of 200 years of Australian landscape to be held at the Royal Academy, London, in September 2013. This is a long-overdue event, and it is to be hoped the NGA takes the opportunity to make the show something more than a historical … More


Fred Williams

September 10, 2011

When the previous retrospective of an artist’s work contained no fewer than 417 pieces, it is inevitable that a new exhibition of about 120 pictures will be known as the ‘smaller’ show. That earlier Fred Williams’s mega-retrospective was held at the National Gallery of Australia in 1987, but I still have a vivid recollection of … More


Goodbye Margaret, hello Brisbane

July 31, 2011

There are a number of phone calls that I dread, although they are inevitable. One arrived last Wednesday when the SMH Arts Editor, Clare Morgan, rang to tell me that Margaret Olley had died. Margaret has been a fixture on the Australian art scene since the 1940s, and it would be difficult to think of … More


Eugene von Guérard

July 23, 2011

In the entire history of Australian art, no painter has ever been through greater extremes of adulation and neglect than Eugene von Guérard (1811-1901). In the 1860s he was recognised as the finest landscapist in the colony, but by the 1870s his reputation was in decline. In the following century he was all but forgotten. … More


William Robinson

May 14, 2011

Looking at this year’s dismal selection for the Wynne Prize at the Art Gallery of NSW, I couldn’t help thinking that the most average landscape by William Robinson, who won the prize in 1990 and 1996, would have murdered everything else in the room. More


Photography & Place & An Edwardian Summer

April 2, 2011

In 1975 the International Museum of Photography in Rochester, New York, hosted the exhibition: New Topographics: Photographs of a Man-Altered Landscape. It is still talked about as one of the most influential shows of the modern era, with an index of its significance being that second-hand copies of the original catalogue now change hands for … More


Mary Tonkin

February 1, 2011

At first glance Mary Tonkin’s new paintings make one think of the scorched and blackened residues after a bush fire has roared through a forest, but here appearances may be deceiving. The area of the Dandenongs where she has her studio on a family property has its share of scorched trees and undergrowth, but this … More


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