The back gate
1897 - 1979
L Roy Davies was apprenticed to a Sydney firm of poster-makers, Hollander and Govett, in 1913, where he learnt the use of lino blocks for the production of advertising posters and other commercial work, and developed an interest in making prints of
his own. After finishing art studies at the Julian Ashton School, he embarked on a six month walking tour of Victoria, where he
made sketches of rural scenes that were later to become the subject of many of his wood engravings. The first of these he
made in 1921, after being introduced to Lionel Lindsay, who was also making some of his first wood engravings at the time, and
produced more than sixty over the next decade.
“The back gate” is a refined version of Davies’ earliest attempts at the medium, which included studies of trees and rustic bush huts, and was illustrated in the English art journal the Studio in a special edition on ‘The new woodcut’ in 1930, a considerable
achievement for an Australian artist at the time – the only other local artist included was Lindsay.
from Anne Ryan, 'Australian etchings and engravings 1880s–1930s from the Gallery's collection', AGNSW, Sydney 2007
wood engraving, printed in black ink on ivory wove paper
12.1 x 16.1 cm blockmark; 17.4 x 20.4 cm sheet
Signature & date
Signed, dated in block to print l.r. corner "RD/ 24".
Signed and dated l.r., pencil "Roy Davies/ 24."
Gift of Karna Livingstone 1976
Not on display
Shown in 1 exhibition
Australian images: Prints, drawings and watercolours from the collection, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 22 Dec 1979–28 Jan 1980
Referenced in 2 publications
Australian etchings and engravings 1880s–1930s from the Gallery's collection, Sydney, 2007, 85 (colour illus.). cat.no. 130
Jane de Teliga, Australian images: Prints, drawings and watercolours from the collection, Sydney, 1979, 3.