Fred Williams pioneered a new vision of the Australian landscape, and became one of the most important Australian artists of the twentieth century. This exhibition highlights Williams’ strength as a painter including important oil paintings and luminous gouaches to reveal his distinctive approach. He sought inspiration from the unique landscapes of places such Upwey in Victoria, Tasmania’s Bass Strait and the arid Pilbara region of Western Australia, drawing on the abstract qualities of the distant horizons of this vast country.
Although Williams is often associated with dry environments, this exhibition also presents his fascination with water – ponds, rivers, waterfalls and seascapes. Also of great interest are the portraits of family and friends Williams produced throughout his career, which show an artist engaged with his subjects, and intrigued by a sense of his sitter’s individuality.
This comprehensive retrospective is the first major exhibition to focus on Williams in more than twenty five years.