08 Aug, 2018

Art

Art and the Bush: The Heidelberg School

Art and the Bush: The Heidelberg School
Arthur Streeton | ‘Still glides the stream, and shall for ever glide’ (painted at Heidelberg 1890) | Image: Art Gallery New South Wales

It’s no secret that we’re very fond of the works of The Heidelberg School artists. For us they evoke a romanticism of living on the land, of the simplicity of a pastoral lifestyle and the allure of our beautifully strange landscape.

If you live in Australia you probably would have seen replicas of some of these iconic works; in op-shops, vintage-themed cafes or maybe you’re lucky enough to have seen some originals in-situ in a gallery. 

 

Tom Roberts | Trawool landscape 1928 | Image: Art Gallery New South Wales

For those who aren’t familiar, The Heidelberg School was an art movement of Australian landscape artists who painted in the late 1880s and early 1890s – they are often referred to as the Australian Impressionists for the influence of the French Impressionist aesthetic on their work. Their name was given to them for the fact that they spent time together in artist-camp sites around the rural area of Heidelberg, east of Melbourne, where they painted out in the bush, en plein air. Some of our favourite works from this group are those by the artists Thomas William Roberts, Arthur Streeton, Frederick McCubbin and Jane Sutherland – their scenes are ones that we find ourselves coming back to again and again. 

We draw a lot of inspiration from the emotive works of these painters, with a shared love of the Australian landscape and the spirit of the bush.

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There are many contemporary Australian artists who have been greatly influenced by The Heidelberg School, and one of those is Blue Mountains local, Graham Gercken. You can read our interview with Graham here

 

Frederick McCubbin | Landscape 1914 | Image: Art Gallery New South Wales

Visit www.artgallery.nsw.gov.au