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An image of Jumping horse-mackerel by John Passmore

John Passmore

(Australia 04 Feb 1904 – 09 Oct 1984)

Jumping horse-mackerel
Media category
Materials used
oil on hardboard

121.9 x 149.8 cm board; 128.0 x 156.0 x 5.0 cm frame

Signature & date
Signed and dated l.r. corner, "August 1959 [pencil]/ -Sept. 1959 [brown (oil?)]/ J.Passmore [(pencil?)]".
Purchased 1959
Accession number
© John Passmore Museum of Art
20th & 21st c Australian art
Further information

John Passmore studied briefly at Julian Ashton's Sydney Art School before travelling to England in 1933, where he remained for 18 years. Inspired by modern French painting, in particular the work of Cézanne, Passmore returned to Australia in 1951 and began teaching a generation of young artists including John Olsen, Yvonne Audette and William Rose.

Passmore took part in the avant-garde exhibition 'Direction I' held at Macquarie Galleries in 1956, which launched abstract expressionism on the Sydney art scene. During this period, Passmore derived his images principally from the waterways of Sydney - fishermen, jetties and the changing patterns of sea and sunlight.

Bibliography (13)

Art Gallery of New South Wales, Art Gallery of New South Wales picturebook, Sydney, 1972, 123 (colour illus.).

Christine France, New Directions 1952-1962, 'New directions 1952-1962', pg. 7-19, Sydney, 1991, 43. 56

Sasha Grishin, Australian art: a history, 'The competitive spirit in Australian art', pg. 350-363, Carlton, 2013, 350 (colour illus., detail), 354, 355, 356 (colour illus.), 551, 566. plate no. 34.3

Mervyn Horton (Editor), Art and Australia [vol. 1, no. 1], Sydney, May 1963, 11 (illus.).

Robert Hughes, The art of Australia, Ringwood, 1970, 15, 261 (illus.), 262, 328. 106

Ronald Millar, Civilized magic: an interpretive guide to Australian paintings, Toorak, 1974, 21 (colour illus.).

Hal Missingham (Editor), Art Gallery of New South Wales Quarterly, 'Acquisitions for 1959', Sydney, Apr 1960, 19 (illus.).

Barry Pearce, John Passmore 1904-84, Sydney, 1984, 77 (colour illus.). 50

Jill Sykes, Look, 'Remembering John Passmore: a home for the works of an important Australian artist', pg. 20-22, Newtown, Aug 2004, 20 (colour illus.), 21.

Whitechapel Art Gallery (Compilator), Recent Australian Painting, London, 1961, (illus.). plate no. IV

Editor Unknown (Editor), The Sydney Morning Herald, Sydney, 19 Sep 1959.

Editor Unknown (Editor), Daily telegraph and daily news, Sydney, 17 Sep 1959.

The Helena Rubinstein Travelling Art Scholarship 1959, Sydney, 1959. 46

Exhibition history (6)

Selections from 'The Helena Rubinstein Travelling Art Scholarship' 1959, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 16 Sep 1959–11 Oct 1959

Recent Australian Painting, Whitechapel Art Gallery, London, Jun 1961–Jul 1961

1940-1965: The heroic years of Australian painting:

John Passmore Retrospective (1984-1985):

New Directions 1952-1962, Lewers Bequest and Penrith Regional Art Gallery, Emu Plains, 08 Feb 1991–24 Mar 1991

Australian icons: twenty artists from the collection, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 04 Aug 2000–03 Dec 2000