(circa 1916-circa 1917)
20 Aug 1871 - 23 Jan 1955
Sydney Long is the best-known proponent of Symbolist-inspired painting in Australia. Symbolism was an influential late 19th-century movement characterised by works expressing ideas, mood and dream states over material realities, and its artists often employed Art Nouveau’s sensuous arabesque forms as a means of expressing these metaphysical domains. 'Fantasy' uses the figure of Pan, the Greek mythological figure of a man with the hindquarters of a goat, alongside a group of dancing women in a stylised landscape with curving trees.
(circa 1916-circa 1917)
oil on canvas
132.5 x 107.0 cm stretcher; 145.3 x 119.7 x 8.3 cm frame
Signature & date
Signed l.r. corner, black oil "SYDNEY LONG.". Not dated.
Purchased under the terms of the Florence Turner Blake Bequest 1971
© Estate of Sydney Long. Courtesy Ophthalmic Research Institute of Australia
Where the work was made
Shown in 8 exhibitions
Sydney Long (1979), S.H. Ervin Gallery, The Rocks, 22 Aug 1979–07 Nov 1979
Two centuries of Australian painting, a selection from the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Orange Regional Gallery, Orange, 19 Apr 1986–15 Jun 1986
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
Australian Collection Focus: Sydney Long: Pan, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 06 Jun 2009–30 Aug 2009
Looking for faeries: The Victorian tradition, Bendigo Art Gallery, Victoria, 16 Oct 2010–28 Nov 2010
Australian Symbolism, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 04 May 2012–22 Jul 2012
Sydney Long: the spirit of the land, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, 17 Aug 2012–11 Nov 2012
Shaded, Dubbo Regional Art Gallery, Dubbo, 28 Aug 2017–03 Dec 2017
Referenced in 12 publications
Art Gallery of New South Wales, Art from Australia: 2016 calender, Sydney, 2015, n.pag. (colour illus.). month of April
Anna Clabburn., Looking for faeries: the Victorian tradition, 'The legacy of English fairy painting', Bendigo, 2010. Not paginated; List of works at the back.
Deborah Edwards, Stampede of the Lower Gods: Classical Mythology in Australian Art, 'The Antipodean Arcady/ When Pan purloined Apollo's lyre', pg. 8-31, Sydney, Sep 1989, 14 (illus.), 64.
Deborah Edwards, Two centuries of Australian painting: a selection from the Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'Introduction', pg. 8-14, Sydney, 1986, 10, 27 (illus.). cat.no. 23
Anne Gray, Sydney Long: the spirit of the land, 'The spirit of the land', pg. 45-70, Canberra, 2012, 45, 49, 50, 59, 60, 64, 68, 136 (colour illus.), 137. cat.no. 48
Denise Mimmocchi, Australian Symbolism: the art of dreams, 'Sydney Long: Arcadian myth and the decorative landscape', pg. 110-122, Sydney, 2012, 116, 121 (colour illus.), 146, 148 (colour illus.). image on pg.148 is a detail.
Denise Mimmocchi, Look, 'Australian symbolism: An exhibition exploring the antipodean art of dreams', pg. 24-27, Sydney, Apr 2012, 26 (colour illus.).
Denise Mimmocchi, Australian Collection Focus: Sydney Long - Pan, 'Sydney Long: Pan', pg. 1-12, Sydney, 2009, 8 (colour illus.).
William Splatt and Barbara Burton, 100 masterpieces of Australian painting, Adelaide, 1973, 124, 125 (colour illus.). plate no. 59
Jill Sykes (Editor), Look, 'What's on elsewhere', pg. 44-45, Sydney, Jun 2012, 44 (colour illus.).
Daniel Thomas, Art and Australia, 'Australian collection', pg. 52-62, Sydney, Jul 1972, 56 (colour illus.).
Donald Williams, In our own image: the story of Australian art, Sydney, 1995, 72 (colour illus.).