- Place where the work was made
New South Wales
- Media category
- Materials used
- charcoal on paper
- 111.0 x 99.0 cm sheet; 124.4 x 111.8 x 6.0 cm frame
- Thea Proctor Memorial Fund 2012
- Not on display
- Accession number
- © Rachel Ellis
- Dobell Prize for Drawing
- - 2011
- Artist information
Works in the collection
Rachel Ellis is highly regarded for the subtle geometry of her drawings of urban subjects – interiors, inner city backyards and rooftops. A committed Christian, she won the Blake Prize in 1996 with a powerful drawing of the woman wiping her tears from the feet of Jesus.
'Evensong' clearly has spiritual undertones. For the artist it is 'a prayer to the author of light and nature' as experienced in the suburban everyday. Intensely personal, the setting for this drawing is the view to neighbours' houses on Durham and Havannah Streets, Bathurst, over the side fence of her house. However the real focus of attention is the weathered fence and two trees, one lopped (or amputated) to a tall stump, the other reaching upwards, feather-like, into the bright afterglow of late afternoon light.
Light to dense layers of charcoal worked well into the grain of heavy drawing paper, have created a bold chiaroscuro and a rich tactile graphic surface. The drawings of Lloyd Rees and Seurat come to mind, but also something of the spirit of Samuel Palmer and Frederick Griggs.
This work was a finalist in the 2011 Dobell Prize and was acquired by the Gallery in 2012.
Where the work was made
Shown in 4 exhibitions
Dobell Prize for Drawing (2011), Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 02 Dec 2011–05 Feb 2012
Rachel Ellis: paintings & drawings, King Street Gallery on William, Darlinghurst, 07 Feb 2012–03 Mar 2012
Contemporary Australian Drawing: 20 Years of the Dobell Drawing Prize, Grafton Regional Gallery, , 15 Feb 2013–24 Mar 2013
Contemporary Australian Drawing: 20 Years of the Dobell Drawing Prize, Lake Macquarie City Art Gallery, Booragul, 30 Mar 2013–05 May 2013
Contemporary Australian Drawing: 20 Years of the Dobell Drawing Prize, Orange Regional Gallery, Orange, 05 Jul 2013–18 Aug 2013
Contemporary Australian Drawing: 20 Years of the Dobell Drawing Prize, National Art School, Darlinghurst, 29 Aug 2013–06 Oct 2013
Contemporary Australian Drawing: 20 Years of the Dobell Drawing Prize, Tweed Regional Gallery & Margaret Olley Art Centre, Murwillumbah, 18 Oct 2013–24 Nov 2013
Contemporary Australian Drawing: 20 Years of the Dobell Drawing Prize, Drill Hall Gallery, Australian National University, Canberra, 11 Apr 2014–18 May 2014
Rachel Ellis: Sustaining Light, Bathurst Regional Art Gallery, Bathurst, 08 Jun 2018–05 Aug 2018
Referenced in 3 publications
Christopher Allen, The Australian, ‘Nuanced works draw on the disciplined imagination’, pg. 13, Canberra, 19 Dec 2011, 13.
Hendrik Kolenberg, Contemporary Australian Drawing: 20 years of the Dobell Prize for Drawing, ‘Introduction’, pg. 6-14, Sydney, 2012, 11, 65 (illus.), 79.
Jill Sykes (Editor), Look, Sydney, Apr 2012, 21 (illus.).