This distinctive assemblage of retro-reflective road signs epitomises Rosalie Gascoigne’s poetic use of found objects, particularly those containing text. Cut up into fragments, rearranged and composed in a grid formation, the panels display orderly shapes of text against a bright yellow background with light-reflecting properties and a subtle ability to shimmer and shine.
Salvaged from the roadside or from rural tips and depots, Gascoigne used retro-reflective road sign material throughout her 25-year artistic career, which started when she was 57 years old. During this period she became one of the key figures in twentieth century Australian art.
Through her lyrical reuse of materials once part of the landscape, Gascoigne sought to transform her deeply felt experiences of the harsh rural Monaro district where she lived. Foraging its environs for discarded materials, Gascoigne created idiosyncratic works from an assortment of found objects – old wooden bottle crates, weathered fence palings, corrugated iron, worn linoleum – but her reuse of brightly coloured orange and yellow retro-reflective road signs is her most recognisable signature.
Frequently referred to as visual poetry, Gascoigne’s art employs techniques of fragmentation, repetition and juxtaposition – and while letters in her work are not coherent, language is central to the message and layered meaning. Her reuse of the light reflective material is equally important:
“I don’t want it to be dramatically lit, but I do want it to sometimes flash at you, as road signs do, and then go sullen, then flash, like a living thing” Rosalie Gascoigne, 1988.
From 1955 to 1965 while working for ‘Vogue’, Klein chose to photograph his models out in the streets. The contemporary norm for the time was to photograph fashion models in a controlled studio environment,so Klein’s work helped pioneer the idea of street photography for fashion shoots. The present work,exhibited at a one man show at the flagship fashion store ‘Jaeger’ in London in 1960,is one of his most recognisable images.It shows the models Simone and Nina on a pedestrian crossing,the lines of their elegant dresses complimenting the ‘Zebra’ painted markings of the street surface below. While posed, it captures a whimsical moment in time. Nina has passed Simone and while her path is intercepted by a speeding Vespa she takes the opportunity to, rather wryly, check her rivals couture. It would appear that in this instance Klein supported the adage that women do indeed dress for women!
The collection of Lewis Morely;
Private collection, Sydney
(1) Christine Keeler Seated with Chair, 1963, printed 2011,
C-type photograph printed on Fuji Crystal Archive Flex paper,
edition 48/150, signed in ink in lower margin, 30.5 x 40.6cm
(2) Lewis Morley: I To Eye, T&G Publishing, Sydney, 2011.
Hardcover book with dust jacket, 400 pages with over 270
duotoned and colour photographs; 8.1 x 47 x 36.4cm (box).
(3) Eight-page booklet entitled Lewis Morley: The Hidden
Nude with text by Lewis Morley.
One of the first two Indigenous artists to represent Australia at the 1990 Venice Biennale, Rover Thomas’ works sparked a greater appreciation of Aboriginal art, both nationally and internationally.
A desert man, the story of his life is interwoven with that of the Canning Stock Route. Thomas was born in the 1920s and raised in the Country around its middle stretches. At an early age he was picked up by a drover, Wally Dowling, and taken north to Billiluna and the Kimberley. He became a stockman himself, and eventually married and settled at Turkey Creek. There, in the 1970s, he pioneered the East Kimberley school of ochre painting on canvas.
Tuckson undertook his final year of study in 1949 at East Sydney Technical College under the Commonwealth Reconstruction Training Scheme for exservicemen. The figurative works from this period, through to the mid- 1950s, are among Tuckson’s most accomplished – they are raw, painterly and powerful. Each is masterfully constructed. While the influences of Picasso, Modigliani and Klee are apparent, the artist cited his two most inspiring mentors at the time to be Grace Crowley and Ralph Balson. Both these artists taught him briefly with their weekly classes in abstraction at East Sydney
inscribe l.l (pen and ink) 'Louvre, Rembrandts [sic] "Bathsheba" / Paris 4/4/67; inscribed across lower edge (in pencil) 'background dark sepia'; 'incredible feeling of sadness as she / contemplates the contents of the letter'; stamped l.r (in black ink)
Estate of the artist, Sydney. Thence by descent; Frannie Hopkirk, New South Wales, the artist’s sister; Private collection, Sydney, acquired from the above in 1997; Deutscher and Hackett, Australian + International Fine Art and Aboriginal Art, Sydney, 30/11/2016, Lot No. 81; Private collection, Sydney
In this serene painting the tonality and layering of the inks demonstrate aptly the artist’s growing interest and skill with calligraphic brush strokes. Whiteley was fascinated with eastern philosophies and painting techniques during this period of his ouevre. Stylistically, Brett Whiteley’s Lake in Bali (Lake Kintamani) references the Chinese painting tradition of ‘one corner’ that gently leads the gaze away from the corner of the frame. A related work, Jenny’s Lake, c. 1983 is in the collection of the Brett Whiteley studio.
During 1969-1970 Fred Williams had three major shows: a 1969 exhibition of new paintings that included ‘the strikingly innovative works’ of that year at Rudy Komon Gallery in Sydney; a further exhibition of selected paintings at Skinner Galleries, Perth, 1970 and perhaps most importantly the artist’s first museum exhibition, Heroic Landscape at the National Gallery of Victoria, 1970.1 This was the first time a major Fred Williams survey had been held in a state gallery and his paintings were exhibited alongside those of the eminent impressionist, Arthur Streeton.
Sapling Diptych was featured in an exhibition of works from the estate of Fred Williams at Philip Bacon Galeries in 2000.
1. Patrick McCaughey, Fred Williams, Bay Books, Sydney, 1980, p. 210