First Year Australian Literature Art Gallery Visit

Hi Folks- thank you all who made the effort to come. It is always a joy to me to be able to introduce students not only to Australian painting, but also to the many hidden links between painting and literature. I hope in your own teaching in years to come (for some) you will take the lead and use the connections between literature and art to deepen student appreciation of the richness of our (or any culture)…. and for those of you who missed the visit (and for those who want to do it -virtually- again!)… I have posted the recordings of the tours in WebCT- in the community portal (under “Art Gallery”)… the first recording (actually the last group) was the best- because we had more time, less rush, and there was more opportunity for interaction… so if you want to listen to one only… go to the first one……
Now here are some pics that you may recognize:

And here are some of the paintings that I spent some time on with you:
Here is John Glover (the artist who produced “My House and Garden” in Tasmania…. here I was drawing attention to the way some early landscapes represented the country like a parkland… the other side of the coin was to present it as sinister and overwhelming:

Yes we did all genuflect before this image of the “founding father” of Aust. Lit.!

And we talked about the way the Heidelberg artists (who learnt to paint out of doors) also enobled the Australian experience in paintings such as this one “On the Wallaby” by Fred McCubbin

Of course Tom Robers with his “Bailed Up” about Bush Rangers was also such an artist, drawing attention to the experiences that made us really Australian… Australians with an axe to grind against British imperliasts:

And we did note how this theme was continued well into the 20th Century with the work of Sidney Nolan and his Ned Kelly series:

We also looked at Margaret Preston’s work (her interest in Aboriginality and her interest in Native Flora); here, her self portrait:

Then we compared the “disgusting” modernism of someone like Gleeson, with his images of body parts (what kind of comment on the world today)… compared this with the whimsical humour of Jeffrey Smart who painted a “portrait” of Clive James:

Finally we looked at that amazing Aboriginal work by Lin Onus…. fruit bats on a hills hoist… what a work of genius!…. paying tribute to the continuing power of Aboriginal art in a world which has tried to forget and ignore it….

If you want to hear some more talk and discussion about these and any matters artistic… I encourage you to go to the Art Gallery Visit Learning Module in your WebCT Community Portal and LISTEN…..

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