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Roger Kemp

Structure in Landscape, c. 1935

Price: $27,500


Catalogue number: 7

enamel on card

86.00 x 112.00

titled on Estate label verso


The Estate of Roger Kemp (Estate No. 32)


Roger Kemp - Cycles and Directions 1935-1975, National Gallery of Victoria, Monash University and Melbourne University, Melbourne 1978, no. 25

Literature & references:

Patrick McCaughey, Roger Kemp - Cycles and Directions 1935-1975, exhibition catalogue, Melbourne, 1978, illus no. 25: “… During the earliest stages of his art in the late ‘30s, Kemp shared and delighted in the early moderns’ emancipation from nature. The sense of release in many of Kemp’s small oil sketches of 1935-40 bears witness to that; a sense of creative freedom at finding another basis of painting than representation informs them as it does so many early modernists.” (McCaughey, op. cit. unpaginated);
Christopher Heathcote, The Art of Roger Kemp, MacMillan, Melbourne, 2007, see p 53 for 'Music Forms', 1938-41, probably a later work than the present, but employing a reminiscent composition and palette in primaries red, blue and yellow: “Despite the emphasis on Cézannist structure, Kemp’s still lifes and landscapes are more in sympathy with a Matissian outlook. Everything about them – their colour, texture, looseness of form – has a bounce. Usually executed in a single session, such painterly images seem more impulsive than his [earlier paintings of bathers]. There is a pleasing freshness and fluidity to several pieces where the artist has quickly drawn his subject with the brush or palette knife. Using azure, cobalt green, zinc white, cadmium red and yellow, the unrestrained colour seems lyrical, not programmatic. The handling of his pigments is looser and more tactile with the paint being trowelled over the surface as a thin paste. Most striking are the spontaneous landscapes which evolved into a lengthy series.” (Heathcote, op. cit. p 38);
David Hurlston, et. al. Roger Kemp: Visionary Modernist, retrospective exhibition catalogue, National Gallery of Victoria, 2019, see p 2 and 3 for Music in Nature, c. 1936 in the NGV collection, and Untitled (Landscape painting), 1936-37 - both landscapes of a similar date to the present work.

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Since its establishment in 1984, the Charles Nodrum Gallery’s exhibition program embraces a diversity of media and styles - from painting, sculpture & works on paper to graphics and photography; from figurative, geometric, gestural, surrealist & social comment to installation & conceptually based work.