Part 1: Important Fine Art
27 November 2013


born 1936

hand-painted and glazed ceramic

113.0 cm height

signed at base: William Robinson

Private sale

Ray Hughes Gallery, Sydney
Private collection, Sydney

Catalogue text

The following excerpt is taken from the Art Gallery of New South Wales LOOK Magazine article by the then Senior Curator of Australian Art, Barry Pearce.

'The eminent Queensland artist and two-time Archibald Prize winner's major triptych has been transposed to this ceramic, created in collaboration with the Australian master potter, Errol Barnes.

The three panels of 'Man and the Spheres' convey the passing of time from afternoon through night to early morning as we scan them from left to right. In the centre panel is a symbolic portrait of the artist as a rock in the moonlit stream of a primeval forest. The stars, which evoke a sense of cosmic energy and growth, are reflected on the artist's head. In making himself a central part of his creation story, Robinson has enveloped himself in the richness of the world that he sees.

The spiral movement of the whole composition relates to the roundness of the earth on one hand, and on the other to the great curving expansion of the universe: 'I immerse myself in it and paint a multi-vision, as if I am going for a walk just as we are now - looking up into the trees, peering down into the creek, and across to that mountain, and still sensing the feeling of being back up on the ridge looking down at the light falling into that deep gorge. I'm not only observing what I see, but contemplating things remembered and anticipating others, so both sides of a mountain might be painted, and a starry sky might fall down to the bottom of the picture.'