(Australia 1946 – )
33.0 x 100.0 cm image; 57.0 x 130.0 cm sheet
Rod McNicol has known his subject, the artist Robert Hunter, for a long while - even before that first portrait was taken in front of his studio wall in 1984. When asked to pose again 20 years later, 'he was into it - and it is a fairly demanding ask of anyone,' says McNicol.
It is the same studio wall, but how fascinating and subtle are the changes time has wrought in Hunter's face. McNicol has decided this twin portrait will be the forerunner of a series in which he revisits portrait photographs he took in the early part of his career.
Portraits have always been a strong strand in his work. Born in Melbourne in 1946, he studied photography at Prahran College. In 1988 he won the St Kilda Arts Festival Prize and was awarded an Australia Council grant. He has also participated as an artist-in-residence in the Oncology Ward of Melbourne's Repatriation General Hospital. Of the past decade he says he 'just disappeared' as he followed a different passion - horses and the art of dressage. 'But you can't have two major obsessions that don't pay very much money,' he says. So the dressage is in his past and he is back developing several photographic projects.
With many impressive credits to his name, McNicol's work is included in the collections of the Art Gallery of New South Wales, the National Gallery of Victoria, National Gallery of Australia, National Library of Australia and the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris. He has exhibited widely with exhibitions shown from Melbourne to Cracow and Paris.
Extract from AGNSW website media release.
The Citigroup Private Bank Australian Photographic Portrait Prize 2004, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 27 Mar 2004–16 May 2004