- Media category
- Materials used
- oil on canvas
- 153.0 x 305.9 cm stretcher overall
- Signature & date
Signed and dated l.l. verso [part b], purple oil "albrecht/ 83".
- Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program by Simon Johnson 2014
- South Building, lower level 1, 20th-century galleries
- Accession number
- © Gretchen Albrecht
- Artist information
Works in the collection
Gretchen Albrecht began experimenting with abstraction in the 1970s. She developed a fascination with geometric forms, particularly the arch, after visiting the United States and Europe and in 1981 began developing her semicircular ’hemisphere’ paintings. These initially comprised two panels, or quadrants, bolted together, as here with 'Penumbra'.
Albrecht works on the floor, soaking the canvas with paint and using a wallpaper brush to build up layers in broad, sweeping movements. Her colours are chosen intuitively and often allude to those found in paintings from the Renaissance period.
A penumbra, from the Latin paene ’almost’ and umbra ’shadow’, is described as an area of partial shadow between complete darkness and total illumination. It is a transitional zone in which light and shade merge together. For Albrecht, the title represents the final layer of a painting, creating an important association between the physical artwork and its emotional content.