Peter Hudson "24 Hours Under a Dwarf Star" @ HARVEY GALLERIES, 26 October - 4 November, 2018
The rotation of the earth through the cycle of night and day as it hurtles through space around the sun is for Peter a touchstone of sorts. A reminder of the the great mystery and gift of life and the reality of our position in the universe. In this body of work titled 24 hours under a Dwarf Star Peter explores the sense of unity and expanded sense of place that arises for him from this daily touchstone and his own understandings of place and country.
Growing up in Northern and Central West Queensland instilled in Peter a love of the Australian Bush. However it has been his ongoing association with the Gurindji people that has drawn Peter into a deeper relationship with, and understanding of, what one can call the spirit of the land; all the things that make a place what it is, its geology, flora and fauna and their ecology, its people, their culture and history. It is in this sense that the spirit of the land unpins the symbolic nature of Peter’s work.
While Peter frequently enjoys the rigour of plein-air painting, his landscapes are often more a synthesis than what we understand as traditional landscape painting. A recurring device of Peter’s is the use of the horizon splitting the image into two equal halves. This functions to sets up a dialectical tension between the elements of the image which at times operates on both the technical and symbolic registers. In works such as Coonoowrin and Crescent Moon, the bottom section - an inverted image of Coonoowrin - was painted plein-air during the day, while the top section - a night sky of stars with a constellation mirroring the shape of Coonoowrin below - was completed at night in the studio. In this case the process mirrors the content; the rigour of capturing the concrete versus the more contemplative formation of the abstract. Throughout Peter’s work there is a sense of unity in duality, day and night, the micro and the macro, the ephemeral and the eternal, gently reminding us of the interconnectedness of everything. Furthermore, Peter’s paintings remind us that the landscape is not empty, that it is as vibrant as it is ancient.
EDUCATION 2000 Charlie Sheard Studio School, Sydney 2000 Degree Conversion Course (Painting major), National Art School, Sydney 1994 Advanced Diploma in Fine Arts (Painting major), National Art School, Sydney 1990 … read more →
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