Elioth Gruner 1882-1939, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 18 July-4 September 1983, cat. 25
A very private collection, S.H. Ervin Museum & Gallery, Sydney, 15 June-15 July 1990, cat. 21
James Gleeson, Masterpieces of Australian painting, Melbourne: Lansdowne Press, 1969, pp. 100, 101 (illus.)
James Gleeson, Impressionist painters 1881-1930, Melbourne: Lansdowne Press, 1971, pp. 75 (illus.), 120
James Gleeson, Australian painters: colonial 1788-1880, impressionist 1881-1930, modern 1931-1970, Sydney: Lansdowne Press, 1976, pp. 211 (illus.), 256
Ian Burn, National life & landscapes: Australian painting 1900-1940, Sydney: Bay Books, 1990, p. 18 (illus.)
Elioth Gruner's beach scenes of the 1910s owe a good deal to the art of the previous generation. Barry Pearce notes that 'reviewers enthusiastically compared them with Charles Conder'1; they even have the feel of James Whistler's little japoniste coastal sketches, which Gruner may have seen in reproduction. The series also has a more immediate inspiration in the artist's relocation from North Sydney to Bondi in 1912. Gruner loved the beach, and when not painting there was an enthusiastic bodysurfer. From this close familiarity with and pleasure in the mood and light and activity of the foreshore, Gruner developed the distinctly personal accent of paintings such as the present work.
Part of a second, slightly later series of beach paintings from around 1917-1920, Beach scene, Tamarama is simplicity itself: three bands of broad, almost uninflected sky and sea and sand. Between the horizon and the sky an invisible steamer passes with a grey smudge of smoke. Between the horizon and the shore the surf breaks in a creamy horizontal squiggle. In the foreground, under the heat of noon (the shadows are blue and short) is a shorthand vision of modern Australia at leisure: two deckchairs, two sunshades, a sunhat and a handful of pink and indigo bathers.
As James Gleeson has observed of this work, 'his analysis of tone and colour is sure and exact and the execution is delightfully brisk and economical ... in this crisp little beach scene his own enjoyment comes through to us quite forcibly.'2
We are most grateful to Steven Miller for his assistance in cataloguing this work.
1. Barry Pearce, Elioth Gruner 1882-1939, Sydney: Art Gallery of New South Wales, 1983, p. 38
2. James Gleeson, Impressionist painters 1881-1930, Melbourne: Lansdowne Press, 1971, p. 120
Please call 1-800-555-5555 to order a print catalog for this sale.
Online Registration to Bid is Closed for this Sale. Would you like to watch the live sale?Watch Live Sale