From Sharne Wolff…
Angus Nivison’s paintings are works from an artist who wears his heart on his sleeve. Although his luminous paintings have their roots in the landscape around his home of Walcha, Nivison captivates the viewer with his intense expressions of anger, sorrow, joy and elation expressed on canvas in abstract form. The artist builds up layers of acrylic paint often with the addition of charcoal or gesso for textural effect. Nivison has a fondness for oversized canvases (several works in this show are over 5 metres in length) and an intimate knowledge of colour relationships – using both to immerse the viewer in the landscape of his emotions.
Angus Nivison: A Survey includes work from 1995 onward. ‘Rain’ has been Nivison’s major subject for the past couple of decades. The 6.4 metre Remembering Rain won the 2002 Wynne Prize. The title of this work was used by director Mandy Chang in the 2005 documentary of the same name, which examined the viability of farming for many of those who, at the time, were finding ways to survive the effects of living in the driest continent on earth. In a week where we’ve just seen the power of nature through the devastation and havoc wreaked by flood and fire, Nivison’s paintings become relevant as portraits of the experience of living in Australia – a country which simultaneously provides its inhabitants with relative safety and constant threat.
Until February 10, 2012
S.H. Ervin Gallery, The Rocks.
Pic: Angus Nivison, Summer Cotton Bimbang 2009, acrylic, gesso & pigments on canvas 200 x 360 cm. Courtesy the artist and Tamworth Regional Gallery.