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

🛈 Find out what you need to know before visiting


Deep Rock



Lyndell Brown


19 Apr 1961 –

Charles Green


1953 –

  • Details

    Media category
    Materials used
    oil on linen
    168.0 x 167.5 cm stretcher
    Signature & date

    Signed and dated upper l. verso canvas, pencil "Lyndell Brown Charles Green/...2011..."

    Contemporary Collection Benefactors 2012
    Accession number
    © Lyndell Brown and Charles Green

    Reproduction requests

    Artist information
    Lyndell Brown

    Works in the collection


    Artist information
    Charles Green

    Works in the collection


  • About

    Brown and Green's collaborative art practice was deeply affected by their time as official war artists in Afghanistan in 2007. Apart from the confronting nature of the conflict they witnessed, this experience turned the artists back to their earlier interest in history and representation, of how contemporary events intersect with the legacies of past histories which also inform how we experience place and landscape.

    'Deep rock' layers various images over and behind each other, making space and perspective deceptive and hard to locate. The landscape at the top of the painting is reflected in water which seems to extend into the sky and water below. This distinctively Australian scene of river cliffs and water is the place on the Yarra river where Fred Williams painted his last major series of landscapes. A postcard of Caravaggio's painting of Narcissus reflected in the water mirrors the edge where cliff and river meet, while other crumpled images float across the work including an image of an bombed Pakistani military outpost, a Japanese print next to an old painting of a trading port, torn and crumpled paper with text that refers to climate change and a refugee boat at the lower right sailing beneath the mirage of natural beauty. A Tibetan figure in a ritualistic skeleton costume lies in the path of the boat.

    The drift of information and image in this work, painted with a seductive technical ability, is both alluring and confusing. Deliberately hard to read as narrative, it presents fragments of information that seem to hover between utopian and dystopian views of the enduring physical beauty of the world and the human events which unfold against it. The collage of images and references layers the artist's personal memories and associations with broader cultural and political events – the way in which all our memories intersect with much larger events and histories than we may have personally experienced.

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 1 exhibition

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 3 publications

    • Lyndell Brown and Charles Green, Colloquy, 'Retrospective', pg. 34-42, Melbourne, Dec 2011. NOTE: The article does not directly discuss 'Deep rock', it contains general information relevant to the work.

    • Amelia Douglas, Broadsheet, 'The viewfinder and the view', pg. 200-205, Adelaide, 2009. NOTE: The article does not directly discuss 'Deep rock', it contains general information relevant to the work.

    • Dylan Rainforth, Age, 'Lyndell Brown/Charles Green: the dark wood', n.pag., Melbourne, 12 Nov 2011. NOTE: The article does not directly discuss 'Deep rock', it contains general information relevant to the work.

Other works by Lyndell Brown

Other works by Charles Green