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Australian art

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The quake



Pam Hallandal


16 Jan 1929 - 26 Sep 2018


Pam Hallandal’s work is an affirmation of humanist values, which she pursues in drawings that use the human figure as a vehicle for imaginative, and empathetic, experience. This structurally rich and complex expressive drawing is from Hallandal’s last, great period of work which was sparked by the horrifying events of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. The extraordinary energy and power of nature and the cataclysmic consequences for those caught up in its impact had a profound impact on the artist who witnessed it, as most Australians did, via the television screen.

“The Tsunami series started with the devastating events of 2004 and I’ve been working on it ever since… In the intervening years there have been all sorts of catastrophes – floods and hurricanes – and man, with all his technology, buffeted by the powers of nature…. It’s an attempt to find a way of talking about the power of nature” (Pam Hallandal, quoted in 'Pam Hallandal, watching', Art Gallery of Ballarat, 2016 pg. 56). This particular drawing stemmed from the artist’s reaction to reports of the devasting earthquake of 2011 in Christchurch, New Zealand.




Media category


Materials used

charcoal, pastel, ink on three joined sheets


112.7 x 214.3 x 3.5 cm frame

Signature & date

Signed and dated l.r. corner, charcoal "HALLANDAL/ 2012".


Gift of the artist 2016


Not on display

Accession number


Dobell Prize for Drawing

- 2012

Artist information

Pam Hallandal

Artist profile

Works in the collection


Shown in 1 exhibition

Exhibition history

Referenced in 2 publications


Michaela Boland, The Weekend Australian Review, "Luck of the draw as 80-year-old strikes it rich", pg. 3, Canberra, 07 Nov 2009-08 Nov 2009, 3. Iin 'The Nation' section.

Hendrik Kolenberg, Pam Hallandal: watching, Essay 'In celebration of Pam', pg 8, Ballarat, 2016, 8, double-page fold out between pages 52-52 (colour illus.).