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Patrick Heron (1920-1999)
Patrick Heron (1920-1999)

Sydney: 18 Dec: 1989

Patrick Heron (1920-1999)
Sydney: 18 Dec: 1989
signed, inscribed and dated 'Patrick Heron/SYDNEY: 18 DEC 1989/gouache' (on the reverse)
22½ x 30 in. (57.1 x 76.2 cm.)
with Waddington Galleries, London.
London, Waddington Galleries, Patrick Heron Sydney Paintings and Gouaches 1989-1990, March - April 1991, no. 3.

Brought to you by

André Zlattinger
André Zlattinger

Lot Essay

Heron had fallen in love with Australia on his first visit in February 1967 and seized upon every opportunity to return to the continent. From 5 November 1989 until 28 February 1990, he was artist-in-residence at the Art Gallery of New South Wales in Sydney. Daily strolls through the Botanical Gardens as well as frequent trips to Sydney Harbour and the Bush captured his imagination. He was entranced by the strangeness of the flora and fauna and the clarity of light. This visit was one of the most prolific periods of work in his life. In the sixteen weeks he produce an astonishing forty-six large gouaches and six large paintings. In so doing, he established the characteristic linearities and calligraphics of his later style, and arrived at a method that combines description with evocation, spatial complexity with decorative verve, and a compositional flamboyance that could come only from an artist whose ecstatic vitality of response to the drenching light and colour of the external world was matched by his own virtuosity (M. Gooding, Patrick Heron, London, 2008, pp. 246-254).

In the current work the blue of Sydney Harbour, the leaves, lawns and exotic flowers of the Botanic Gardens, all bathed in the incandescent light of Australian summer, are caught in an ecstatic concentration of washes and opacities, scribbles and arabesques.

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