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Article

New Zealander, 20th century, male.

Born 9 June 1906, in Westport; died 15 April 1971, in London.

Painter, printmaker, graphic designer.

Artists' International Association, London Group.

James Boswell came to England to study at London's Royal Academy in 1925. In 1933 he joined the Communist Party and became a founder member of the ...

Article

Robert Smith

(b Melbourne, Oct 4, 1913; d Melbourne, July 5, 1986).

Australian painter, printmaker, draughtsman, sculptor, cartoonist and illustrator. Largely self-taught, he began printmaking in 1931 and worked as a caricaturist, cartoonist and illustrator for the weekly and left-wing press, his outlook influenced by experience on the dole and political struggle during the Depression. In 1941 he began oil painting, his first pictures being mainly a celebration of Australian working-class tenacity during the 1930s: for example At the Start of the March (1944; Sydney, A.G. NSW). A founder-member of the Contemporary Art Society in 1938, he initiated its 1942 anti-Fascist exhibition and helped organize an Artists’ Unity Congress, receiving awards for his paintings of miners in the ensuing Australia at War exhibition in 1945. From 1939 to 1940 he was in New Zealand and from 1949 to 1952 in Europe, mostly London. Later he made frequent trips to Britain and France, as well as visiting the USSR and Mexico.

Counihan’s imaginative and creative versatility enabled him to produce extended pictorial metaphors for inherent contemporary crises, embodying potent artistic responses to specific conditions of oppression and discrimination, the nuclear threat and attendant social alienation. From the late 1960s he created images in numerous interrelated series challenging Australia’s involvement in the Vietnam War, for example ...

Article

(b Birmingham, March 15, 1863; d Waverley, Oct 1, 1930).

Australian painter, etcher and illustrator, also active in England. In his formative years he undertook illustrative commissions for the Picturesque Atlas of Australasia, as well as for the Australian Town and Country Journal and other publications. For a time he painted with his friends Tom Roberts, Arthur Streeton and Charles Conder at their camps around Mosman, or on trips to Richmond and along the Hawkesbury River. In his best paintings of this period he achieved a lyricism and sure handling of paint that resembles the work of Conder. During this period he also became interested in etching. In 1900 he moved to New York and the following year he travelled to London, where he continued to work as a black-and-white artist with the London Graphic and Black and White. He painted landscapes depicting picturesque sights and developed an interest in monotypes, using the delicacy of this medium to create soft, low-key images of atmospheric subjects. He worked in the tradition of English landscape painters, such as John Constable and John Sell Cotman, producing calm, quiet, understated images....

Article

Anne Gray

(b Meckering, W. Australia, March 18, 1926).

Australian painter and printmaker. In his formative years he worked as a graphic designer in Perth, which provided him with a solid technical training. He moved to London in the 1960s where he worked at a screen-printing factory. He was inspired by the abstract tradition of Frank Stella, Ellsworth Kelly and Joseph Albers. When he first saw their work, the scale of it had an immediate and liberating effect on him and he embarked on a series of large experimental pieces using a combination of pure colour and built-up pigment. He also believed that art must relate to society, or be of use in the community, and to this end he made political posters and trade union banners.

McKay has been consistently experimental in his approach to making art, in his exploration of surface textures, the mystery of lettering and the interplay of colour. He has frequently used text as metaphor and has constructed austere images with meticulously crafted surfaces and created iconic forms out of popular imagery and found objects. His work is abstract, in the Greek or medieval sense of the word, in so far as it contains general and inherent aspects of phenomenon and not its individual or accidental aspects....

Article

Australian, 20th century, female.

Born 9 June 1945, in Adelaide.

Painter, sculptor, printmaker. Scenes with figures.

Ann Newmarch uses a heliographic system to create images inspired by postcards of the 1920s.

2007, WACK! Art and the Feminist Revolution, Geffen Contemporary at Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (travelling exhibition)...

Article

Robert Smith

(Leslie)

(b Melbourne, Nov 23, 1929).

Australian cartoonist, printmaker, writer, illustrator, film maker and sculptor. After employment as an illustrator in Melbourne (1949–52), he worked in London as a freelance illustrator and cartoonist (1954–60). On the return journey to Australia he formed a lasting interest in South-east Asia, publishing the resulting perceptive and deceptively simple drawings with commentary in the first of his many illustrated books. He worked as a freelance artist in Melbourne until his appointment as resident cartoonist for the Sydney Daily Mirror in 1963 and the newly established national daily, The Australian, from 1964 to 1973. He quickly achieved popularity and repute, especially for his penetrating visual comments on involvement by Australia and the USA in the Vietnam War. He had little formal training in art and developed for himself a free-ranging personal style, which was widely emulated.

From 1970 Petty made or scripted numerous films, often combining actuality with animation and incorporating his own caricatural kinetic sculptures. After some earlier pioneering sculptural works, he created the first of what he called his ‘machine sculptures’, the ...

Article

Tony Mackle

(b Auckland, Aug 4, 1906; d Wellington, June 6, 1964).

New Zealand printmaker, book illustrator and painter . Taylor had no formal art training, but his work in both jewellery manufacturing and commercial advertising developed his superb skills as a draughtsman and his innate sense of design. Significantly, from 1944 to 1946 Taylor was appointed as art editor and illustrator for the Schools Publications branch of the New Zealand Education Department. He saw the merits of wood-engraving for illustration in school journals and during the remainder of his career created over 200 woodblock images of the flora and fauna of New Zealand and Maori mythology. International recognition for his wood-engraving came through exhibitions in New York (1954) and in Russia (1958).

In 1952 Taylor received a New Zealand Art Societies Scholarship with which he studied Maori life and society, publishing in 1959 Maori Myths and Legends through his own publishing house, The Mermaid Press. Taylor also illustrated books published by the Wingfield Press, Pelorus Press and A. G. & A. W. Reed, as well as encouraging the graphic arts and printmaking through his involvement with the New Zealand Print Council and the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts....

Article

Janda Gooding

(b Ashford, Kent, March 4, 1887; d Perth, June 11, 1944).

Australian painter, printmaker and illustrator of English birth who worked mostly in Western Australia. After initial studies at the St Martin’s School of Art and at the City of London Guilds, he worked as an artist and illustrator for several publications before emigrating to Western Australia for health reasons. He arrived in Perth on 11 May 1915 and worked as a commercial graphic artist before taking a post as a public servant in Narrogin.

Returning to Perth in 1921, he became Assistant Art master to J.W. R. Linton (1869–1947) at Perth Technical School. It was from this time that he first started to make colour woodcut prints by the Japanese method of hand-colouring the individual blocks. His prints achieved delicate tonal variations with a strong sense of oriental design and their simplicity and attractiveness made them popular among a wide audience. A 1924 article in The Studio magazine brought his work to international prominence and a print was acquired by the British Museum. He produced many exquisite watercolours of the local landscape and exhibited these widely throughout Australia with a solo exhibition at the Fine Art Society in London in ...

Article

Shearer West

English family of painters and illustrators . Richard Westall (b Hertford, 1765; d London, 4 Dec 1836) was apprenticed in 1799 to John Thompson, a heraldic engraver in London. The miniaturist John Alefounder (d 1795) advised Westall to take up painting, and in 1784 he exhibited a portrait drawing (untraced) at the Royal Academy. He became a student at the Royal Academy Schools in 1785, an ARA in 1792 and an RA in 1794. He exhibited over 300 works at the Royal Academy and 70 at the British Institution, including such large watercolours as Cassandra Prophesying the Fall of Troy (exh. London, RA 1796; London, V&A), which are painted in violent and sometimes excessive colours. Others, such as The Rosebud (1791; New Haven, CT, Yale Cent. Brit. A.), tend towards a Rococo prettiness. His principal expertise was book illustration. He was employed by John Boydell, Thomas Macklin and ...