Most Recent Publications
|Published with The University Art Gallery, University of Sydney
Edited by A.D.S. Donaldson and Ann Stephen with contributions by Gladys Fabre and Virginia Spate
A long forgotten 1934 exhibition by the Australian expatriate JW Power at the Abstraction-Création gallery in Paris provides the key to understanding this most elusive artist. Stephen and Donaldson argue that Power is Australia’s most important avant-gardist of the early twentieth century. In the interwar years, Power moved between cities, immersing himself in both contemporary and historical art, this restlessness leading to his own unique painting: part- abstract surrealism, part-surreal abstraction.
His most significant contribution however was made in Paris. There he studied with Pedro Araujo and Fernand Léger and showed with Léonce Rosenberg and Galerie Jeanne Bucher. Crucially, he was a founding and long- term member of Abstraction-Création. In her essay, published in English here for the first time, art historian Gladys Fabre describes how this group was the focus for the international avant-garde moving through Paris in the 1930s. Virginia Spate examines Power’s creative process through the analysis of a single painting. J.W. Power Abstraction-Création reveals how Power’s work illuminates the relationships between Sydney and Paris, and between France and Australia, an exchange that goes to the heart of Australia’s modernism.
A.D.S. Donaldson is an artist, curator and art historian. He lectures in the painting department at the National Art School, Sydney and studied at the University of Sydney, the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf and the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, Copenhagen.
Ann Stephen is an art historian and senior curator of the University Art Gallery at the University of Sydney. Her books include: On looking at looking: The art and politics of Ian Burn (2006); and Modern Times: The untold story of modernism in Australia (2008), co-edited with Andrew McNamara and Philip Goad.
Gladys Fabre is an art historian and curator. Her exhibitions include Léger et L’Esprit l’art non-objectif 1918-1931 (1982), abstraction-création 1931-1936 (1978), and Van Doesburg & the International Avant-Garde: Constructing a New World (2009).
Virginia Spate is emeritus professor of art history at Sydney University. Her books include The Colour of Time: Claude Monet, winner of the Mitchell Prize for Art History in 1993; and Orphism: The evolution of non-figurative painting in Paris 1910-1914.
|Published with Institute of Modern Art
Edited by Ian McLean
ISBN 978 0 909952 37 2
This is the first anthology to chronicle the global critical reception of Aboriginal art since the early 1980s, when the art world began to understand it as contemporary art. Featuring 96 authors—including art critics and historians, curators, art centre co-ordinators and managers, artists, anthropologists, sociologists, philosophers and novelists—it conveys a diversity of thinking and approaches. Together with editor Ian McLean’s important introductory essay and epilogue, the anthology argues for a re-evaluation of Aboriginal art’s critical intervention into contemporary art since its seduction of the art world a quarter-century ago.
Ian McLean is a well-known commentator on Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australian art and the intersection of Indigenous and settler cultures. He has published extensively in Australia and overseas. His books include The Art of Gordon Bennett and White Aborigines: Identity Politics in Australian Art. He is Professor of Australian Art History at the University of Western Australia and the University of Wollongong, and serves on the advisory boards of the journals Third Text, World Art and National Identities.
How Aborigines invented the idea of contemporary art: Writings on Aboriginal contemporary art is part of the four-book series Australian Studies in Art and Art Theory and is published with the assistance of the Australia Council for the Arts, the Getty Foundation and the Nelson Meers Foundation.
By Erika Esau
Australia and California have shared aesthetic ideas through imported popular imagery for nearly two hundred years. From gold rush photography to Spanish-style houses, Images of the Pacific Rim tells the fascinating story of aesthetic exchange between two ‘cultures on the periphery’. The absorption of images into the everyday life of these ‘new’ Western societies, made possible by the development of mechanical processes of production, constructed distinctive cultural iconographies and helped to create a sense of place based upon a shared ocean and climate. Through photography, graphic art, architecture, and the ubiquitous eucalyptus, this book reveals the source elements of what became a ‘Pacific Rim’ aesthetic.
Erika Esau is a native Californian who spent more than a decade teaching art history—including the history of Australian art—at the Australian National University, Canberra. She received her Ph.D. in the History of Art from Bryn Mawr College, Pennsylvania. Her writings on Australian art and culture include the Blue Guide Australia (with George Boeck), E.O. Hoppé’s Australia (with Graham Howe), and articles on the history of Australian photography.
Images of the Pacific Rim is part of the four-book series Australian Studies in Art and Art Theory and is published with the assistance of the Getty Foundation and the Nelson Meers Foundation.