- Media category
- Materials used
- 128.5 x 67.5 x 22.0 cm
- Signature & date
Signed and dated l.r. corner below right leg of male figure, incised ".../ Jean Broome A.S.T.O./ .../ 1934".
Signed l.l. corner verso on base, incised "JEAN BROOME".
- Purchased 1985
- 20th-century galleries (ground floor)
- Accession number
- © Estate of Jean Broome-Norton
- Artist information
Works in the collection
The themes of sexuality, procreation and vitality were pronounced in the sculpture of Rayner Hoff and his school. As a student of Hoff, Jean Broome-Norton drew from
his example to produce her own powerful expressions of a modern, forthright physicality and feminine procreative power.
In Broome-Norton’s exceptional art-deco relief 'Abundance', the sexually assertive male and female bodies proclaim their child as a heroic product of their union. The workis an emblem of the fruitfulness of the land and the human race. The athleticism and fecundity of the bodies is coupled with a sense of the fertility of the land, signified by sheaves of wheat and a wreath. Such optimistic and mythic imaging gives no indication that the sculpture was conceived during the social upheaval of the Great Depression. The work instead reinforces notions of Australian life as a golden age of physical and environmental harmony.
Shown in 4 exhibitions
Stampede of the Lower Gods: Classical Mythology in Australian Art 1890's-1930's, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 19 Oct 1989–26 Nov 1989
'This vital flesh': the sculpture of Rayner Hoff and his school, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 26 Nov 1999–16 Jan 2000
Thoroughly modern Sydney, Museum of Sydney, Sydney, 01 Jul 2006–15 Oct 2006
20th-Century galleries Rehang (Ground Level), Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 20 Aug 2022–2023
Referenced in 14 publications
Isobel Crombie, Body culture: Max Dupain, photography and Australian culture, 1919-1939, 'Natural Selection has here created an almost new race', pg. 47-68, Mulgrave, 2004, 56 (colour illus.). NOTE: this is the plaster edition in the collection of the National Gallery of Victoria
Deborah Edwards, Aspects of Art Deco in Australia: Sunrise over the Pacific, 'The new classicism: Rayner Hoff and his school', pg. 36-45, Sydney, 2001, 40 (colour illus.), 41-42.
Deborah Edwards, 'This vital flesh': the sculpture of Rayner Hoff and his school, 'Australia, the new Greece: the body as nation', pg. 30-51, Sydney, 1999, 39, 41 (colour illus.), 107.
Deborah Edwards, Stampede of the Lower Gods: Classical Mythology in Australian Art, 'The New Greece / 'Delos of a coming Sun-god's race'', pg. 31-54, Sydney, Sep 1989, 39 (illus.), 65.
Deborah Edwards, Daphne Wallace, Margo Neale, Victoria Lynn and Sandra Byron, Review: works by women from the permanent collection of the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 1995.
Deborah Edwards, Look, 'This vital flesh in three dimensions', pg. 14, Melbourne, Dec 1999-Jan 2000, 14 (colour illus.).
Deborah Edwards, Art and Australia (Vol. 24, No. 1), '"This vital flesh": the 1920s sculpture of Rayner Hoff', pg. 62-68, Sydney, Spring 1986, 64 (illus.).
Deborah Edwards, Look, Jean Broome-Norton's 'Abundance', pg. 16, Heidelberg, Nov 1987, 16 (illus.).
Bruce James, Art Gallery of New South Wales handbook, 'Australian Collection: Painting and Sculpture', pg. 102-181, Sydney, 1999, 143 (colour illus.).
Joan Kerr (Editor), Heritage: The national women's art book, Sydney, 1995, 79 (illus. colour). cat.no. 126.
Christopher Menz, Art Deco 1910-1939, ''A growing enthusiasm for Modernity': Art Deco in Australia', pg. 406-416, London, 2003, 409 (colour illus.). illus.no. 38.4
Ursula Prunster, Aspects of Australian art, Sydney, 2000, (illus.). card no. 7: Russell Drysdale 'Sunday evening' 1941
Roseville Community Association Inc, William Henry's 40 acres & the people who lived there: then and now, 'A thing of beauty', pg. 54-55, Sydney, 2000, 54, 55 (illus.).
Howard Tanner and Inara Walden, Thoroughly modern Sydney: 1920s and 30s glamour & style, Sydney, 2006, 10. List of works.