Ian Howard studied art at a time when the only challenge to the dominance of figurative painting was the formalist doctrines of abstraction. When he graduated in 1968 these concerns seemed trivial with Australia’s unfolding involvement
in the Vietnam War. In response, Howard began making life-sized impressions of military hardware by taping large rolls of paper directly over these machines and making crayon rubbings of the structures beneath.
The 'Enola Gay' was the B-29 Super Fortress US bomber that dropped an atomic bomb on the Japanese city of Hiroshima on 6 August 1945. Howard presents an ominous ‘shadow’ of the machine that carried the most destructive bomb
in world history.
black wax crayon rubbing on three sheets of paper, two black and white photographs
wax rubbing 274.0 x 361.0 cm (irreg.) overall; photographs 99.0 x 116.7 cm each sheet :
89 x 370.5 cm; The dimensions for parts a & c may need to be swapped.
89 x 371 cm; The dimensions for parts a & c may need to be swapped.
89 x 373.5 cm
99 x 116.7 cm
99 x 116.7 cm
Gift of the NSW Government Art Scholarship Committee 1977
Not on display
© Ian Howard
Shown in 5 exhibitions
Off the Wall / In the Air: A seventies' selection, Monash University Gallery, Clayton, 28 Jun 1991–10 Aug 1991
The Bomb, Monash University Gallery, Clayton, 13 Jul 1993–21 Aug 1993
Follow the Flag: Australian artists at war 1914-1945, Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia, Melbourne, 24 Apr 2015–16 Aug 2015
Black Mist, Burnt country, S.H. Ervin Gallery, The Rocks, 24 Sep 2016–06 Nov 2016
(Ian Howard June 1977), Watters Gallery, East Sydney
Referenced in 3 publications
Rod James, Nuclear (r)age: the bomb in Australian art, 'Nuclear (R)Age: the bomb in Australian art', pg. 4-16, Clayton, Jun 1993, 6, 13 (illus.), 29. cat.no. 29
Michael Wardell, Contemporary: Art Gallery of New South Wales Contemporary Collection, 'Ideas and actions', pg.60-107, Sydney, 2006, 76, 77 (illus.).
Jenepher Duncan (Editor), Off the Wall / In the Air: A seventies selection, Unknown, 1991. cat. no. 64