New Visions in Landscape: John Leslie Art Prize 2018

John Leslie Art Prize exhibition view of interior

 

What we see is mediated by what we are looking for and that is specific to our time and ourselves.


We have an ongoing love affair with the landscape in Australia. Landscape forms both our imaginative and physical worlds and seeps inexorably into our literature and art. It doesn’t nurture. It is mercurial. Water, the most essential element of life, is severely limited. Despite its whims, we are obsessed with its beauty.

Read moreNew Visions in Landscape: John Leslie Art Prize 2018

Is Landscape Painting History?

Alexandra Sasse landscape painting in North Melbourne Australai

Seeing the world as more than a backdrop or stage-set for unfolding narratives is the basic premise of landscape painting. It requires sensation rather than symbol to be the dominant motive. This is at odds with the corrosive didacticism of much academic art which looks for the obvious moral in every artwork. The recently set up Hadley’s Art Prize – a $100,000 prize for an Australian landscape painting, is a case in point.  It has been called a landscape prize when what they really require is history painting, and a certain kind of history at that.

Hobart hotel owner Don Neil has launched one of Australia’s richest art prizes, with an annual $100,000 award for landscapes…. and this year invites artists to address the theme “history and place”.

Artist and curator Julie Gough, who is one of the judges, says the award encourages artists to think beyond European concepts of landscape as depictions of sublime nature. “History is about story, and the entrants have to consider that as much as things such as vegetation and landforms,” says Gough. “It will be interesting to see how people push that theme.”

The Australian 27th Jan 2017

And here is Ben Quilty, judging the 2017 Glover Prize for Australian landscape painting and commenting:

Read moreIs Landscape Painting History?

Urban Rhythms – Harley Manifold, Paintings.

Image of Harley Manifold painting 'Mr Boxie ran into something'

Bridge 38 Galley, Richmond, November 10th – 30th, 2016

Image of Harley Manifold painting 'Mr Boxie ran into something'
‘Mr Boxie ran into something’ by Harley Manifold 88 x 161cm

Attending an exhibition opening can be a bit like going on a blind date. What if I don’t like the work? What will I say? Painting can go so wrong and often does. But in this small gallery in the heart of Richmond, sixteen paintings demonstrate that Harley Manifold knows what he is doing with paint. His surfaces are articulate, composite, layered. Colour is calibrated into convincing form.

Read moreUrban Rhythms – Harley Manifold, Paintings.

Surreal Worlds – John Leslie Landscape Prize

John Leslie Landscape Prize Review Alexandra Sasse with Nicolas Harding's Wilpena Wattle at the John Leslie Art Prize 2016

This landscape painting prize, based in Sale, is one of those generous moments when a local benefactor makes a significant contribution to the nation’s cultural life….and ensures that serious contemporary work reaches the regions. It encompasses vertiginous highs and repellent lows. Predominantly the work is largish and surreal. Colour has mostly escaped any sense of