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Australian art

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The hillside



Lloyd Rees


17 Mar 1895 - 02 Dec 1988


Drawing was fundamental for Lloyd Rees; during the 1930s he made drawings to the exclusion of all else. His 1930s highly detailed and refined drawings of the environs of Sydney Harbour remain among the most popular works of his oeuvre.

"Drawing was simply an obsession and I was completely absorbed in the discovery of form and composition. The drawings were by no means naturalistic in the sense of simply selecting a subject and drawing it, for there were things brought in and things left out. They were highly worked and I had an intense interest in the manipulation of them. I drew in the morning and then took the work home and looked at it in the afternoon and if I saw anything superfluous, I rubbed it out". (Lloyd Rees, 'Peaks and Valleys, an autobiography', 1985, p.166)

Rock faces and cliffs were a favoured subject of Rees. The subject of this drawing is Waverton, then Bay Road, near North Sydney, where Rees lived at various addresses between 1918-19, 1920-22 and 1931-34.

© Australian Art Department, Art Gallery of New South Wales, 2004


Place where the work was made

Waverton Sydney New South Wales Australia



Media category


Materials used



20.0 x 26.0 cm sheet

Signature & date

Signed and dated l.r., pencil "L. REES 1932".


Purchased 1932


Not on display

Accession number


Artist information

Lloyd Rees

Artist profile

Works in the collection



Where the work was made

Shown in 9 exhibitions

Exhibition history

Referenced in 15 publications


Clary Akon, Limelight Magazine, 'Nature by design: the art of Lloyd Rees', pg. 96-97, Sydney, Jun 2013, 96 (colour illus.).

Christopher Allen, The Weekend Australian, 'Tangible Life Forms', pg 12-13, Sydney, 01 Jun 2013-02 Jun 2013, 12 (illus.), 13.

Art Gallery of New South Wales, Lloyd Rees Retrospective, 'Catalogue: drawings', pp 32-35, Sydney, 1969, 33. titled 'The Hillside'; 127

Jane de Teliga, Australian images: Prints, drawings and watercolours from the collection, Sydney, 1979, 9.

Lou Klepac, Affinities: Brett Whiteley & Lloyd Rees, 'Introduction', pp 2-4, Sydney, 2001, 8.

Lou Klepac, Lloyd Rees drawings, Sydney, 1978, 32. 22

Hendrik Kolenberg, Lloyd Rees Drawings - Centenary Retrospective, 'The thirties', pp 43-64, Sydney, 1995, 52 (illus.). 45

Hendrik Kolenberg, Australian drawings from the Gallery's collection, Sydney, 1997, 54 (illus.). 43

William Moore, The Courier Mail, 'Art and artists: Society of Artists', Brisbane, 17 Sep 1932.

Andrew Sayers, Australian art, 'Order and transcendence: art between the wars 1919-39', pp 120-139, Oxford, 2001, 133, 134 (illus.). plate no. 76

Andrew Sayers, Australian art, Oxford, 2001, 134.

Andrew Sayers, 100 years of Australian drawing, Sydney, 1985, 75. 39

Michael Stutchbury (Editor), The Australian Financial Review, 'Illustrating love of landscapes' pg. L3, Melbourne, 19 Apr 2013-21 Apr 2013, L3 (colour illus.).

Roland Wakelin, Art Gallery of New South Wales Quarterly, 'The artistic development of Lloyd Rees', pp 490-492, Sydney, Oct 1969, 496 (illus.). 'Lloyd Rees special number'

Unknown (Editor), Sun, 'For Art Gallery', Sydney, 30 Aug 1932. Purchases from the Society of Artists exhibition