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1920 – 1999
Arthur Boyd remains one of the most respected and internationally acclaimed Australian artists. While his formal art training was minimal, Boyd had the advantage of being born into an illustrious family whose members included judges, artists, writers, merchants and architects. In fact it was Boyd’s grandfather who taught him the rudiments of painting in the Heidelberg impressionist tradition.
He staged his first solo exhibition in 1939. Then, in 1943 after serving in the army, he decided to devote the rest of his life to painting and ceramic sculpture.
In over half a century of painting the Australian landscape in its many guises, the richness and vitality of Boyd’s work never faltered. And, while he spent many years dividing his time between the United Kingdom and Australia, Boyd and his work remain synonymous with the Shoalhaven River area in southern New South Wales. Bundanon, the beautiful Shoalhaven property which he and his wife Yvonne bequeathed to the nation in 1993 is now a ‘living arts centre’ and a mecca for art lovers with its grand stone house and garden studio filled with Boyd memorabilia.
The Ex Director of the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Edmund Capon, once remarked “Few Australian artists have cast their vision across so broad a landscape of ideas and traditions, both real and mythological, as Arthur. And few have sustained their creative powers with such force and energy.”
Arthur Boyd’s work is represented in prestigious collections all over the world. In 1995 he was named Australian of the Year.
National Gallery of Australia
Art Gallery of New South Wales
National Gallery of Victoria
Art Gallery of South Australia
Art Gallery of Western Australia
Museums & Art Galleries of the Northern Territory
Queensland Art Gallery
Tasmania Museum and Art Gallery
Other regional, university and public collections
Reference: Modern Australian Painting 1960-70 K Bonython; The Art of the Boyds P Dobrez and P Herbst; The Art of Arthur Boyd U. Hoff (1986); The Art of Australia Robert Hughes; The Artist and the River, Arthur Boyd and the Shoalhaven S.McGrath; Arthur Boyd Retrospective B. Pearce.