Exploring the foundation elements of line, shape and colour, this drawing witnesses Nolan's early efforts to create a modernist language that drew upon everything that interested him – from art to elements in the everyday world around him. In particular, it relate to Nolan's 'Luna Park' painting (also in the Art gallery of New South Wales collection), sharing its source in the linear ironwork frame of the Big Dipper at Melbourne’s celebrated Luna Park funfair in St Kilda.
Nolan's search for innovative form and structure led him to try a range of drawing media from crayon, gouache, watercolour and pastel to oil and enamel paints – and to make his drawings, paintings or prints on paper of different textures and densities from tissue paper, through glossy art and photographic paper to blotting paper (as in this case) or even glass.
oil on blotting paper
44.5 x 57.3 cm sheet
Signature & date
Signed l.r., oil "Nolan". Not dated.
Not on display
© The Trustees of the Sidney Nolan Trust. Bridgeman Art Library
Shown in 1 exhibition
Sidney Nolan: 102 Works from the first fifteen years (1939-53), Joseph Brown Gallery, Australia, 25 Jul 1979–07 Aug 1979
Referenced in 1 publication
Joseph Brown Gallery (Editor), Sidney Nolan: 102 works from the first fifteen years (1939-53), Melbourne, 1979, n.pag. (illus.). titiled 'Cubes' and dated c1940 [Title provided by the artist]; cat.no. 6