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Title

Fire's on

1891


Artist

Arthur Streeton

Australia, England, Australia

08 Apr 1867 - 01 Sep 1943


About

Arthur Streeton's visions of the landscape have defined an image of Australia. 'Fire's on' in particular is considered his greatest evocation of the country's heat and sunlight. Painted a year after the artist left Melbourne for Sydney, it constitutes a radical new type of landscape in his oeuvre. Its vertical composition and the high horizon line bring focus to the steep terrain with precarious rocks and dead tree-trunks.

The painting captures a critical moment during the construction of a railway line across the Blue Mountains, west of Sydney: the death of a railway worker in an explosion. 'Fire's on' was the warning call before the blast, as the gang dynamited the Lapstone Tunnel through the hillside. The human drama of the painting, however, is overshadowed by the heroism of the landscape itself.


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Details


Other Title

"Fire's on" Lapstone tunnel


Place where the work was made

Lapstone New South Wales Australia


Date

1891


Media category

Painting


Materials used

oil on canvas


Dimensions

183.8 x 122.5 cm; 225.5 x 164.0 x 6.5 cm frame


Signature & date

Signed and dated l.l., brown oil "Arthur StrEEton. 1891".


Credit

Purchased 1893


Accession number

832


Artist information

Arthur Streeton

Artist profile

Works in the collection

50


Shown in 20 exhibitions

Exhibition history