Donald Friend’s 'The fortune teller' was painted in Brisbane after he and I had been on a painting trip to North Queensland. Donald was looking through Life magazines and saw some photographs of an Indian ceremony which included elephants decorated with elaborate designs. Donald was fascinated and later incorporated the patterns into this painting.
Margaret Olley, 2000
oil on canvas on hardboard
66.0 x 96.5 cm board; 86.1 x 117.7 x 5.9 cm frame
Signature & date
Signed l.r. corner, white oil "DONALD FRIEND". Not dated.
Not on display
Shown in 6 exhibitions
Donald Friend (1956), Macquarie Galleries, Sydney, Jun 1956–Jul 1956
Contemporary Australian Painters (1957):
- Winnipeg Art Gallery, Canada Jul 1957–Sep 1957
- London Public Library and Art Museum, Canada Sep 1957–Oct 1957
- Art Gallery of Hamilton, Ontario Oct 1957–Nov 1957
- The Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery, Canada Nov 1957–Dec 1957
- National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Ottawa Dec 1957–Jan 1958
- Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Canada Feb 1958–Mar 1958
- The Art Gallery of Toronto, Toronto Apr 1958 -
- The Norman Mackenzie Art Gallery, Regina College, Canada May 1958 -
Favourites: Margaret Olley and Barry Humphries choose from Australian collections (2000), S.H. Ervin Gallery, The Rocks, 15 Jan 2000–27 Feb 2000
Parallel Visions: Twenty-two artists from the Australian collection, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 22 Feb 2002–May 2003
Margaret Olley and Donald Friend (2006):
Donald Friend: A charmed life, National Library of Australia, Canberra, 09 Nov 2006–04 Feb 2007
Referenced in 10 publications
Helen Campbell, Australian art: in the Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'Out of Sydney: city and hinterlands', pg. 185-186, Sydney, 2000, 206 (colour illus.), 300.
Christine France, Parallel visions: works from the Australian collection, 'Donald Friend / Margaret Olley', pg. 128-139, Sydney, 2002, 130 (colour illus.), 132, 143, 147.
Margaret Olley, Favourites: Margaret Olley and Barry Humphries choose from public and private collections, 'Introduction', pg. 1-3, Sydney, 2000, 2. Catalogue entry appears in inserted list to printed catalogue
Laurence Thomas., Contemporary Australian painters, 'Foreword', Ottawa, 1957, (illus.). cat.no. 36, illus.no. 10
Donald Friend (1956), Sydney, 1956. cat.no. 19
Barry Pearce, Donald Friend Retrospective 1915-1989, Sydney, 1990, 84 (colour illus.). cat.no. 63
National Art Gallery of New South Wales, Purchases and Acquisitions for 1956 National Art Gallery of N.S.W., Sydney, 1956, 6. cat.no. 6
Daily telegraph and daily news, Sydney, 30 May 1956.
The Sydney Morning Herald, Sydney, 30 May 1956.
Lou Klepac, Donald Friend: a charmed life, Canberra, 2006. Checklist of works.