PATRICK HERON (1920-1999)
PATRICK HERON (1920-1999)
PATRICK HERON (1920-1999)
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Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's… Read more
PATRICK HERON (1920-1999)

Sydney : 18 December : 1989

PATRICK HERON (1920-1999)
Sydney : 18 December : 1989
signed, inscribed and dated 'Patrick Heron/SYDNEY: 18 DEC 1989/gouache' (on the reverse)
gouache on paper
22 1⁄2 x 30 in. (57.1 x 76.2 cm.)
Executed in 1989.
with Waddington Galleries, London.
Anonymous sale; Christie's, London, 26 May 2011, lot 54, where purchased by the present owner.
Exhibition catalogue, Patrick Heron: Sydney Paintings and Gouaches, 1989-1990, London, Waddington Galleries, 1991, p. 9, no. 3, illustrated.
London, Waddington Galleries, Patrick Heron: Sydney Paintings and Gouaches, 1989-1990, March - April 1991, no. 3.
Special notice
Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's Resale Right Regulations 2006 apply to this lot, the buyer agrees to pay us an amount equal to the resale royalty provided for in those Regulations, and we undertake to the buyer to pay such amount to the artist's collection agent. This lot has been imported from outside of the UK for sale and placed under the Temporary Admission regime. Import VAT is payable at 5% on the hammer price. VAT at 20% will be added to the buyer’s premium but will not be shown separately on our invoice.

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Alice Murray
Alice Murray Associate Director, Specialist

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 Heron's output.

In the sixteen weeks in Sydney, Heron produced an astonishing 46 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.

The Estate of Patrick Heron is preparing the forthcoming catalogue raisonné of the Artist's work and would like to hear from owners of any works by Patrick Heron, so that these can be included in this comprehensive catalogue. Please write to The Estate of Patrick Heron, c/o Christie's, Modern British Art Department, 8 King Street, London, SW1Y 6QT, or email at

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