As one of Australia’s greatest and most influential Modernists, Max Dupain re-shaped Australian photography over the course of his career from the 1930s until his death in 1992. He rose to fame as a contemporary photographer who was adept at taking the medium to an artistic level, a quality seldom seen in Australia at that time. Dupain believed that Australia should pursue its own modern culture of photography, rejecting outdated ideas about style and content. He wanted his country to preserve its rich cultural heritage through pictures, while incorporating new techniques and approaches to imaging. His most famous image, Sunbaker, became an icon that has received worldwide recognition.
Blue Gum Forest, Grose Valley NSWc. 1940s, printed later
signed, titled and dated verso
41.5 x 39cm
Private collection, Sydney
This image was originally printed by Max Dupain as the templates for a set of limited edition photographs which were reproduced in a folio for the Royal Blind Society. These three original works were among the artist’s favourites. Blue Gum Forest, Grose Valley, a highly evocative and gentle image of the Australian landscape demonstrates Dupain’s abilities at capturing mood with the use of raking, cinematic light.
Held in AGNSW with date “1940” and comment “Dupain said of his day at Manly beach ‘Actions like this have to be anticipated; in this case by me standing out in the surf with camera and waiting for the start. One shot only—I had to be lucky and I was (Dupain 1986).’”
This is one of the top three beach images by Dupain.
Silos Through Windscreen [Glebe Island, Sydney]1935, printed later
silver gelatin photograph
signed and dated in pencil on image lower right
37.3 x 37.6cm
Glebe Island was the site of a grain elevator and tall concrete silos, which operated from 1921 by the Grain Elevators Board of NSW. While some of the silos were demolished, the remaining are now heritage listed.