We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of NSW stands.

🛈 In line with NSW Health advice, the Art Gallery is temporarily closed to the public. Stay updated on our social media.

Title

The public private preview

1964

Artist

Ken Reinhard

Australia

1936 –

Alternate image of The public private preview by Ken Reinhard
Alternate image of The public private preview by Ken Reinhard
Alternate image of The public private preview by Ken Reinhard
Alternate image of The public private preview by Ken Reinhard
Alternate image of The public private preview by Ken Reinhard
  • Details

    Date
    1964
    Media categories
    Mixed media painting , Painting , Collage , Drawing
    Materials used
    oil, paper, pencil, Letraset lettering, aluminium on hardboard
    Dimensions
    122.8 x 213.4 x 5.2 cm frame
    Signature & date

    Not signed. Not dated.

    Credit
    Wendy Barron Bequest Fund 2015
    Location
    Not on display
    Accession number
    124.2015
    Copyright
    © Ken Reinhard

    Reproduction requests

    Sir John Sulman Prize
    Winner - 1964
    Artist information
    Ken Reinhard

    Works in the collection

    3

    Share
  • About

    Ken Reinhard was, along with Mike Brown and Martin Sharp, a pioneering practitioner of pop art in Sydney, during the early to mid-1960s. Described in The Sunday Telegraph by critic/curator Daniel Thomas as pop art's "first big blessing"[1], Reinhard's awarding of the 1964 Sulman Prize for his work 'The public private preview' introduced Australian audiences to pop art. This was somewhat ironic considering 'The public private preview' satirises passing trends in art and the hype surrounding the arrival of pop in Australia.

    The work depicts the opening of one of Reinhard's exhibitions in which all classes of the art world are in attendance: the beautiful people, the wheeler dealers, the know-it-all critics, and the laymen and their families. The opinionated and questioning commentary of the crowd, combined with the collaged newspaper reviews, offer a tongue-in-cheek critique of the period's established tastes and changing styles.

    'Don't you think these paintings are hung just a little above our heads my dear, after all art is something about which we are all authorities'

    'Well watcha think luv? Watcha think of thin of this 'ere ART?'

    'But madame you must buy it, its so you and I get 33 1/3'

    Stylistically it marked a point in Reinhard's early to mid-career practice when he had shifted from abstract expressionism to painterly collaged pop. There are, however, nods to Reinhard's later hard edge op-pop constructions of the late 1960s and 70s, in the trippy red and white chequered patterning and diagrammatic lettering.

    1. Daniel Thomas, 'Archibald Prize' in Sunday Telegraph, 24 January 1965, p 8

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 4 exhibitions

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 16 publications

Other works by Ken Reinhard