Bodies of Work
Terra Australis, Latin for ‘South Land’, is a hypothetical continent first posited in antiquity, which appeared on maps between the 15th and 18th centuries. Many of my drawings play and expand on early European visions of Australia - The exotic, foreign and antipodal preconceptions of the South Land and the natural/ unnatural history that was assigned to it.’ This collection of drawings formed the basis of the April 2018 exhibition ‘Terra Australis’. The comprehensive solo exhibition also included the first full display of the ‘Birds of New Holland’ folio of etchings (2016-2017) which was further contextualized by the collection of drawings.
'The Birds of New Holland' folio exists as a comprehensive investigation into the developing ecology of the Sydney region, and our evolving attitude and interpretation of ‘nature’ and the ‘natural’ world. The folio, which comprises of 24 editioned hand-coloured etchings produced using traditional 19th century natural history methodologies and aesthetics, depicts the common birdlife found in the area known currently as Greater Sydney. 'The Birds of New Holland' shares its title with a volume of prints produced by early colonial artist John William Lewin, who, in 1808, surveyed and depicted the common birdlife around the newly established colony of Port Jackson, the area now known as Greater Sydney. This current project is designed as a contemporary accompaniment to Lewin’s 1808 work and aims to trace a direct link between his historical investigation and a contemporary survey of the area’s birdlife.
From the exotic, distant and segregated notion of ‘nature’, observed and depicted by Lewin, to a more holistic vision identified by contemporary ecologists, the environment around us has shifted, as much as our attitude towards it. This contemporary suite of prints encourages the viewer to consider their understanding of the ‘natural’ world as that of a long and ongoing succession of cultural interpretations and contextual interactions. The birds of the ‘Greater Sydney’ area endure as an evolving legacy of the environment, as well as our relationship with it, both unrecognisable to their historical counterpart.
'The Birds of New Holland' is available for sale as both a complete set and as seperate individual prints. The complete 'Birds of New Holland' folio set is limited to four hand-printed copies only. Individual prints from the folio are each limited to six hand-printed copies each only.
'Imaginary Creatures' is a limited edition hand printed book combining the work of artist and printmaker Angus Fisher and author and publisher and antiquarian Nicholas Pounder. The book, which the pair have been working on since 2015, displays a collection of imaginary beasts from around the world and is complete with descriptive text and corresponding hand-printed etchings. The book is due to be finished in August 2017 when it will first be exhibited in 'The Artist & the Book' exhibition at Australian Galleries in Sydney.
At the end of 2013 I was invited to travel to Greece with an archeological survey team doing a study of the ancient site of Troizen in the Peloponnese. I worked on location as an artist making studies of the site’s artefacts, history, excavation and landscape. After continuing work on these images throughout early 2014 they were displayed in a solo exhibition at Australian Galleries in Paddington titled 'From Here To Antiquity' Studies from ancient Troizen and wider Greece. The body of work incorporated work completed in Troizen as well as drawings and etchings of other Greek antiquities witnessed on my later travels throughout Europe. The nearly 40 works include graphite drawings, pen and ink work, watercolour painting and a number of etchings. An alternate work listing can also be seen on the 'Australian Galleries' website.
The 'Australia Day 2014' Celebratory Exhibition highlighted the work of a number of top Australian artists and was held at both 'Australian Galleries' venues in Sydney and Melbourne. As well as having the original artwork exhibited at the galleries the images were also featured in various Australian newspapers over the Australia day weekend. Newspapers included the ‘Sydney Morning Herald’, ‘Melbourne Age’ and 'The Canberra Times’. Limited edition digital prints of the works featured in the paper are available through Fairfax Media and my work 'The Kingfishers of Northern Australia' has become the exhibition's highest seller. My eight works included in this exhibition celebrated Australia's colourful tropical ecosystems including the Kingfishers of Northern Australia as well as a Daintree Rainforest scene.
After traveling to central Australia several times I decided to put together a body of work centred on the amazing creatures and plants of the Simpson Desert. This body of work was put together over two years with most of the works drawn on location from live subjects in the Simpson Desert. The works were exhibited in my first solo show in Melbourne at ‘Australian Galleries’ in Smith St. Collingwood. The title of the show ‘Natura Naturans’ translates from a Latin tag coined during the Middle Ages, meaning "Nature naturing", or more loosely, "nature doing what nature does". This body of work includes hand coloured etchings as well as a large amount of smaller pen and ink drawings.
‘Geometry and Precision’ was an exhibition held at the ‘Australian Galleries’ Glenmore rd. premises in Sydney in 2012. The show featured the works of Angus Fisher as well as linocuts and cyanographs by fellow artist Hashim Ali. This body of work focuses on a broad selection of creatures from around Sydney harbour where Angus lives. From birds to coral the work alludes to the complex ecosystems that exist in our marine landscapes while showcasing both the most common and spectacular aquatic species. My work from this show features etching and linocuts as well as several drawings. The exhibition was arranged to present the work of two prominent graduate artists from the ‘National Art School’ that appealed to the gallery. It is through the success of this show that I began my relationship and permanent representation with ‘Australian Galleries’.
After graduating from the National Art School at the end of 2010 I was lucky enough to be awarded a prize to exhibit my graduating work at ‘Robin Gibson Gallery’ in Darlinghurst. The graduating prized named ‘The Robin Gibson Emerging Talent Award’ was awarded to myself and three other artists from different artistic disciplines at NAS. The work exhibited in this exhibition was essentially the same as my contribution to the National Art School graduation show held several months before at the art school campus. The work is the product of three years of study in the form of a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree and explores the history of naturalist illustration as well as its place in the modern world. The body of work includes both drawing and Etching.
Since beginning my career as a fine artist part of my workload has always been commissioned work. I enjoy working with commissions and dealing with the interesting variety of subject it requires. Works of this nature are normally commissioned for private clients homes but can also be for display in places of business and public spaces. Commissioned work is normally in the form of a ‘one-off’ drawing or painting but can be printmaking such as an etching or linocut. I will continue to enjoy working with commissions through ‘Australian Galleries’ intermittently between my own exhibition schedule into the future.