Still life and interiors
Herbert Badham Breakfast piece 1936See this work in the Gallery collection
Donald Friend The fortune teller 1956See this work in the Gallery collection
Margaret Olley Portrait in the mirror 1948See this work in the Gallery collection
Margaret Preston Still life 1926See this work in the Gallery collection
Norah Simpson Studio portrait, Chelsea 1915See this work in the Gallery collection
Eric Wilson Abstract – the kitchen stove 1943See this work in the Gallery collection
Questions and activities
- Look at a variety of interiors – at home, at school and in the local area. What makes each interior different? Collect five objects from an interior you have observed and display them in class. How do the objects suggest the space they are from? Arrange and draw the objects you have found.
- Describe the objects in the works from the Gallery’s collection listed here. What do these objects suggest about the time the work was painted? Discuss how the paintings capture a slice of life from that time. Think about what you would include in a still-life or interior painting to suggest life in 2012.
- Observe how the objects have been arranged. Are the compositions formal or chaotic? Do you think they have been influenced by photography? If so, how? Create and sketch your own still-life arrangement using objects that suggest something about your life.
- Observe each of the people in these works. Look at their body language and their gaze. Describe their facial expressions. Imagine what they are thinking. Invent a story to accompany one of the paintings.
- Observe the surface qualities of these works, particularly the application of paint. Do you think the artists have used natural or studio lighting? Discuss how these works take a ‘modern’ approach to painting. Investigate the changes in technology and society that might have influenced these artists at the time they were painting these works.