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Lesley Dumbrell: Thrum - Art Gallery of New South Wales

— Saturday 20th July 2024

Spanning more than five decades of Lesley Dumbrell's practice, this exhibition presents a selection of paintings and works on paper as well as recent forays into sculpture that demonstrate Dumbrell's unique abstract language, which probes the nuances of colour, rhythm and visual perception.

Lesley Dumbrell: Thrum brings together works ranging from the experimental and unfinished to the highly realised and refined, and includes the joyous Spangle 1977, the first work by Lesley Dumbrell acquired by the Art Gallery of New South Wales, in 1979, as well as the magnificent Solstice 1974, an exceptional optical work that is a firm visitor favourite. Major works from private and public collections around Australia will also feature in both the exhibition and its accompanying richly illustrated publication, including her landmark paintings February 1976 (National Gallery of Australia) and Tramontana 1984 (National Gallery of Victoria).

Starting in 1969 with hard-edge and optical paintings, the exhibition reveals Dumbrell’s development as an assured and ambitious painter with a distinctive voice. Her perennial fascination with colour relationships and the organising power of the grid has seen these elements become potent vehicles for her expression of experience and emotion, sensation and place. Now in her eighties, Dumbrell continues to explore colour and form, with laser-cut metal sculptures the latest advance in a practice characterised by intuition, experimentation and play.


Lesley Dumbrell: Thrum
20 July – 13 October 2024
Art Gallery of New South Wales
South Building
Lower level 2

Image: Lesley Dumbrell Solstice 1974, Art Gallery of New South Wales

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.