Rodney Pople: Golden Age - Art Collector

Rodney Pople, Coogee 1888, 2014. Oil on board, 25 x 38cm. Courtesy of the artist

Rodney Pople’s role as an artist, he proffers, is to draw attention to the hypocrisy that underpins aspects of the modern world. In the pursuit of this mission, his practice crosses disciplines and centuries, employing diverse materials, techniques and art historical references as required. In Golden Age he comments on a 21st century society through lens of iconic Heidelberg School paintings.

While violence in the landscape pervades this series – as it has in Pople’s recent works based on historic and recent atrocities in Australian history, such as the controversial work about Port Arthur that won the Glover Prize in 2012 – other new paintings here adopt a gentler approach. In most he retains the fundamental composition, golden sunlight and scale of his predecessors’ paintings, his intention being to invoke the beauty of the originals to propose alternative ways of looking. Coogee 1888, based on Charles Conder’s picturesque Coogee, sees the foreground’s 19th century woman with parasol replaced with a contemporary female in an innocent state of undress. Depicted as if caught in the act by a passerby, she pulls a blue dress over her head to reveal her bikini- clad body.

Exhibition opens: 6-8pm Tuesday 3 March 2015
Exhibition closes: 22 March 2015
Location: Australian Galleries, 15 Roylston Street Paddington NSW 2021
Contact: 02 9360 5177

Share this page: