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


Idyll: love and life

marble 1926
plaster 1923


Rayner Hoff

Isle of Man, Australia

1894 – 1937

Artist profile

  • Details

    marble 1926
    plaster 1923
    Media category
    Materials used
    106.7 x 52.0 x 13.0 cm :

    a - marble, 106.7 x 52 x 13 cm

    b - tabernacle, 135 x 68 x 23.5 cm

    Signature & date

    Signed l.r. corner, incised "G.RAYNER HOFF". Not dated.

    Gift of Howard Hinton 1926
    Not on display
    Accession number

    Reproduction requests

    Wynne Prize
    - 1926
    Artist information
    Rayner Hoff

    Artist profile

    Works in the collection


  • About

    A relatively short Australian tenure - from 1923 to his death following a surfing accident in 1937 - did not prevent Rayner Hoff transforming the face of Australian sculpture. No active practitioner of the period is more associated with art deco, for example, or with the redirection of monumental statuary in Sydney towards an expressively inflected classicism. Hoff's sculpture is robustly erotic, but never prurient, embodying a paganism which is different in quality and kind from the coarser work of Norman Lindsay. Idyll: love and life might be described as chaste, despite the languor of its poses. Hoff taught drawing and sculpture at East Sydney Technical College, whose students revered and imitated him. Although met at the time with public outrage, Sydney's official Anzac Memorial in Hyde Park remains his enduring testament.

    Art Gallery Handbook 1999

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 3 exhibitions

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 9 publications

Other works by Rayner Hoff

See all 18 works