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Angus Nivison things

have changed


Angus Nivison things have changed 1 - 24 June, 2017

Š Utopia Art Sydney


THINGS HAVE CHANGED It has been over two years since Angus Nivison’s last solo exhibition and, as the title suggests, things have changed. Utopia Art Sydney has moved to new premises and the world at large has undergone dramatic change. Politics which we thought unthinkable two years ago are now commonplace. Indeed, change has always been, and always will be, a constant. Nivison’s new work explores this theme on different levels. ‘Remains of the Day’ is a deeply personal painting of loss, love and farewell. The title work of the show employs a narrative that is much more open where both beauty and terror are present in equal amounts. Does the painting depict a huge red evening storm or is it an apocalyptic vision of the future brought about by indifference or folly or terrible ignorance. Who knows: things have changed! ‘Star Turn’ is a response to a poem by author Susie Burge, inspired by swimming with whale sharks off the remote coast of Western Australia. Nivison found the poem visceral, in that it took him straight to the heart of something he was keen to explore. This evocative painting transports the viewer from the dark indigo ocean to the night sky. Nivison’s concerns with landscape and weather, literal and metaphorical, and his trademark balance between abstraction and figuration are explored in fresh new ways. Angus Nivison’s paintings have always alluded to the landscape and, in a country where the narrative reigns supreme from Banjo Patterson to Sidney Nolan, this has been a handy attribute to have. In letting the viewer believe they are entering something familiar when they look at Nivison’s work, they find so much more.

Pernicious, 2016, acrylic spray paint & charcoal on paper, 205 x 154 cm


Things Have Changed, 2016, acrylic & pigments on unprimed polyester cotton canvas, 4 panels, 188 x 678 cm


Remains of the Day, 2016, acrylic on polyester cotton canvas, 2 panels 188 x 336 cm


STAR TURN Everything falls away at the edge of the reef. Here, water is indigo

Up close, the beast coalesces as if it’s been teleported – long tailed, triangular fins,

seems depthless. Free of the bright coral, this unmoored ocean

a shade darker than Indian ink – and all the other guises be false prophesies.

is terrifying. We hold on to each other, a human chain in the swell. We wear masks

A whale shark sings the sky in, its precise shape a constellation, skin spangled with stars.

and snorkels. To be fair, we are not actually prepared no one tells you the shark Susie Burge, 2016 is a shape shifter. We just hang there, faces in the water, legs dangling. A sub-marine shadow, a zeppelin rising out of the darkness. Wide mouthed, speckle-skinned, enormous and benign.


Star Turn, 2017, acrylic spray paint & pigment on polyester cotton canvas, 3 panels, 188 x 504 cm


Key, 2017, graphite, acrylic & pigments on paper, 154 x 102 cm


Seeing Red, 2016, acrylic pigments on polyester cotton canvas, 2 panels, 160 x 310 cm


Prophecies, 2017, graphite on paper, 2 panels, 154 x 204 cm


To Catch the Wind, 2017, graphite on paper, 2 panels, 78 x 115 cm


Utopia Art Sydney 72 Henderson Rd Alexandria NSW 2015 Telephone: + 61 2 9699 2900 email: art@utopiaartsydney.com.au www.utopiaartsydney.com.au © Utopia Art Sydney


Utopia Art Sydney 72 Henderson Rd Alexandria NSW 2015 Telephone: + 61 2 9699 2900 email: art@utopiaartsydney.com.au www.utopiaartsydney.com.au

Angus Nivison, Things Have Changed  

1 - 24 June, 2017

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