We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of NSW stands.


Bell dance

(circa 1920)


Rupert Bunny

Australia, France

29 Sep 1864 – 25 May 1947

Artist profile

  • Details

    Other Titles
    Bell Dance
    Bell dancers
    Danseuses aux cloches
    Place where the work was made
    Paris France
    (circa 1920)
    Media category
    Materials used
    oil on canvas
    54.0 x 64.8 cm stretcher; 67.9 x 78.0 x 5.0 cm frame; 52.9 x 63.6 cm sight edge
    Signature & date

    Signed l.r. corner, black oil "RCWB" in monogram. Not dated.

    Purchased 1969
    Not on display
    Accession number

    Reproduction requests

    Artist information
    Rupert Bunny

    Artist profile

    Works in the collection


  • About

    'Bell dance' is gloriously coloured, with a rhythmic composition depicting a group of handbell ringers cavalcading across the pictorial surface, with one stooping with the weight of a large bell. Rupert Bunny presents these figures in a flat, decorative style, reminiscent of a Greek frieze or painted vase.

    The painting visually encapsulates the vibrancy of modern dance and the exotic splendour of France’s belle époque, as well as the brilliant and unconventional colour combinations used in the costumes and sets of the Ballets Russes. Applying pure colour, Bunny created vibrant patterns using dynamic arabesque lines, interwoven to create vivid tapestry-like surfaces.

  • Places

    Where the work was made


  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 3 exhibitions

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 8 publications

Other works by Rupert Bunny

See all 52 works