Ken Whisson: Painting and Drawing

Quentin Sprague

Ken Whisson: Painting and Drawing
Melbourne University Press
14 November 2023

Ken Whisson: Painting and Drawing

Quentin Sprague

Ken Whisson (1927-2022) was one of Australia's foremost artists, widely acclaimed for an unwaveringly idiosyncratic practice that charted a singular course through seven decades of modern and contemporary Australian painting. Celebrated in his lifetime with the 2012 retrospective exhibition, Ken Whisson - As If, at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney and the Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne, Ken Whisson: Painting & Drawing presents the first comprehensive study of Whisson's life and work.

Richly illustrated, including with over 300 plates, and drawing on extensive interviews and archival research, it covers the artist's early decades in Melbourne, his long residence in the Italian city of Perugia, and his return to Australia in 2014. The picture that emerges is of an artist driven by the vagaries of memory and an enduring belief in creative intuition - a combination that resulted in one of the most original bodies of work in Australian art.

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