Essay on Robert Hannaford 's Impact On Australian Art

2144 Words Sep 15th, 2016 9 Pages
“From the time I was very young I wanted to draw to understand what I was seeing. I used a pencil to understand things.” This statement from Robert Hannaford concisely encapsulates his approach to art. Throughout his artwork, it is easy to see this approach through his quest to understand the people and environments around him.
Robert Hannaford is one of Australia’s most renowned and influential portrait artists. The Art Gallery of South Australia has curated an exhibit of the artist’s portraiture and drawing works. Robert Hannaford’s impact upon Australian Art can hardly be overlooked. A regular Archibald Prize finalist since 1994, he has painted the likes of former Prime Minister Paul Keating, Chancellors and Ministers within Parliament, Australian of the Year nominees and everyday people. He has been commissioned twice to capture Sir Donald Bradman: once, in a portrait, and another, in sculpture form, which now sits at the entrance to Adelaide Oval. This celebration of the long career and skill of Hannaford displays why his portraits are held in high esteem. The exhibition displays many of Hannaford’s celebrated portraiture works, as well as a number of drawings and portraits from his private collection, which span his entire career. Works from European and Australian Masters are included in the exhibit, showcasing the similarities and yet obvious differences between these artists and Hannaford, and paying homage to the influence they have had upon his works.

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