22 April 2004
This exhibition at Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery presents Rosalie Gascoigne’s series Earth, 1999 as well as selected works ranging from the last twenty years of the artist’s life. All works in the exhibition are from the Gascoigne Estate. Earth, 1999 was the last series Gascoigne made before she died.
Martin Gascoigne has written about the Earth series: “Earth is one of the four classical elements; Gascoigne dealt with all four - fire, earth, air and water - but particularly with air and atmosphere […] Unlike the ‘air’ works of the mid 1990s, the panels that make up Earth, 1999 are very physical, in keeping with their subject matter. Earth, 1999 has gravitas. The word returns us to an element that is basic, in keeping with Gascoigne’s choice of the grid and the uncompromising wood.”
Rosalie Gascoigne used to say, “Art doesn’t come from nowhere, it comes from a long line of human experience, and I like to think that I can pare things down to conform with a sort of classicism.”
“From living in and roaming the country, the idea of Earth allowed scope for all sorts of recollections: ploughed fields; country roads, highway cuttings, cattle yards, muddy river banks, silted estuaries, mine tailings and quarries. There were the views from the air as she travelled to Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide, and when she got there the old buildings with their great masonry foundations as well as the excavations for urban renewal. Rounded river stones, pebbles on the beach and dry stone walls all had a part in her life. From her gardening and her farming sister she knew about soil types - loam, clay, sand - and its productivity–fecund or barren. And its role in the cycle of life, death and renewal.” (Martin Gascoigne, 2004)
The selected works in the small gallery represent Gascoigne’s assemblages from the early 1980s through to 1997. The three-dimensional wall pieces are constructed from weathered plyboards, printed metal, torn linoleum, scallop shells and corrugated iron, and display the impressive range of the artist’s practice. These configurations invite the contemplation of landscape, space and air through the most humble found materials that were once part of the landscape itself.
Rosalie Gascoigne is one of Australia’s most respected contemporary artists. She first exhibited her art in 1974 at the age of 57. Her career spanned 25 years during which time her work was exhibited widely both in Australia and internationally until her death in 1999. Four years after her first exhibition, she was the subject of a major survey exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria, and four years after that she was chosen the represent Australia at the 1982 Venice Biennale. Her works are held in most public collections in Australia including the National Gallery of Australia, New Parliament House, Art Gallery of New South Wales, National Gallery of Victoria, Queensland Art Gallery, Art Gallery of Western Australia, Art Gallery of South Australia, National Art Gallery, Wellington, New Zealand as well as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York and numerous corporate and private collections. A major retrospective of Gascoigne’s work is currently showing at the Wellington City Gallery until 16th May 2004. Gascoigne first exhibited with Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery in 1989. This is her seventh exhibition with the gallery.
Exhibition opening: Thursday 22 April, 2004, 6 - 8pm
Exhibition dates: 22 April–22 May, 2004
Gallery hours: Tuesday - Friday 10am - 6pm, Saturday 11am - 6pm