The Nude in the Art of John Brack (December 2006 - March 2007) at the McClelland Gallery + Sculpture Park in Melbourne.
Published Monday, 20 November 2006Brack's nudes are neither sensual, erotic or even attractive - but they are highly individual, very stylized and spring from a modernist sensibility and visual language. Once seen they are neither easily forgotten or mistaken for another artist's work.
John Brack (1920 – 1999) during his long artistic career systematically explored the full variety of genre in art, ranging from the still life, portraiture, social comment and history paintings to the art of the nude. Brack approached this subject matter with a strong and detailed knowledge of the tradition of art, often directly interpreting famous works into his own idiom, such as his Boucher Nude of 1957.
Brack produced almost 40 paintings on the theme of the nude and 80 major works on paper including watercolours, conte drawings and lithographic prints.
Within this oeuvre of the nude are three distinct stylist developments. The first group, painted around 1957, are characterised by artificial high colour and an emphasis on angular figures and strong linear contours. There is a tension between the cool detachment, stylistic treatment and potential sensuality of the subject. In the second stylistic group of nudes, painted in the early 1970s, the figures are more curvaceous and their settings less impersonal. In the last set of nudes, painted in the early 1980s, the furnishings are dominated by elaborate patterned carpet which complements the warmer flesh tones of the figure. Images such as Double Nude 1982–83 typify these late works with its red brown palette and more sensual representation of the figure.
This exhibition will show both Brack’s paintings and works on paper, giving an invaluable insight to the processes and development of a major Australian artist.
McClelland Gallery + Sculpture Park
390 McClelland Drive, Langwarrin [MELWAYS 103 E3]
Ph: 03 9789 1671
Sourced from a Press Release.