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Articles on Australian art

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Dušan Marek, born Bítouchov, Czechoslovakia 1926, died Adelaide 1993. Analysis of Substance, 1952, Kings Cross, Sydney. Oil on canvas, 36.5 x 88.2 cm. Purchased with the assistance of James Agapitos OAM and Ray Wilson OAM 2007, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra

Surrealists at Sea: Dušan and Voitre Marek finally receive their place in the pantheon of Australian surrealism

Australian surrealism has long been understood as if it was imported from Paris. This new exhibition places two Czech-Australian émigrés at the heart of the movement.
Winner: Archibald Prize 1972: Clifton Pugh. ‘The Hon EG Whitlam’ 1972. Oil on composition board, 113.5 x 141.5 cm. © Estate of Clifton Pugh

‘I think Archie would be pleased’: 100 years of our most famous portrait prize and my almost 50 years watching it evolve

It’s 100 years since the Art Gallery of NSW first held the Archibald Prize. Though loathed by some critics, it is an annual snapshot of the kind of society we are, and who our heroes might be.
Clarice Beckett, Australia, 1887 - 1935, The red sunshade, 1932, Melbourne, oil on board; Gift of Alastair Hunter OAM and the late Tom Hunter in memory of Elizabeth through the Art Gallery of South Australia Foundation 2019, Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide. AGSA

Clarice Beckett exhibition is a sensory appreciation of her magical moments in time

Known for her soft capturing of tonal shifts and poignant moments, painter Clarice Beckett’s legacy was almost lost to time and decay. Now her work is being celebrated in a major exhibition.
Arthur Streeton The vanishing forest 1934, oil on canvas, 122.5 x 122.5 cm. On loan to the Art Gallery of Ballarat from the Estate of Margery Pierce

Streeton: an optimistic celebration of the golden boy of Australian art

A major new exhibition presents a nuanced view of Arthur Streeton who, in his lifetime, was praised as being the artist ‘who has shown us our land as no one else has done’.
Archibald Prize 2020 finalist Blak Douglas (aka Adam Hill), Writing in the sand, synthetic polymer paint on canvas, 250 x 250 cm © the artist. Photo: AGNSW, Felicity Jenkins Sitter: Dujuan Hoosen - documentary star ('In my blood it runs')

‘The most refreshing Archibald exhibition I can remember’: the 2020 portrait prize finalists

Most years, the Archibald exhibition is worth viewing as an amusing exercise in social history. This year it is worth seeing for the art.
Artists Matcham Skipper and Myra Gould on a Melbourne footpath, circa 1940. Albert Tucker/State Library of Victoria

Friday essay: the Melbourne bookshop that ignited Australian modernism

Nestled in the heart of Melbourne’s city laneways, Leonardo Art Shop - also known as Nibbi’s - provided inspiration and education to a generation of young artists.
Vincent Namatjira, Western Arrernte people, Northern Territory, born 1983, Alice Springs, Northern Territory, Close Contact, 2018, Indulkana, South Australia, synthetic polymer paint on plywood; Gift of the James & Diana Ramsay Foundation for the Ramsay Art Prize 2019. Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide, photo: Grant Hancock

Terra nullius interruptus: Captain James Cook and absent presence in First Nations art

For too long, Cook was a promise recollected in pigment, bronze and stone. Contemporary First Nations artists are challenging this imagery.

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