Earlier in June, Piermarq Director Justin Callanan paid a visit to the Hobart studio of legendary Australian landscape artist Geoff Dyer. Flooded with the Hobart light, Dyer’s studio is a step back in time to the old-world studios of the great master painters; worn leather club chairs and an array of oil paints and palette knives. Every surface is layered with the vivd colours of his dynamic landscapes.
Dyer works from photographs and memory, sculpting the movement of the landscape with a pallette knife and blending with a large brush. With multiple large canvases stacked up against unrendered brick walls, Dyer’s landscapes encapsulate an abstraction that is achieved through the physicality of his painting style. His art practice places emphasis on the treatment of the medium as the subject matter itself – ultimately achieving powerful and dynamic compositions.
Born in Hobart, Geoff Dyer’s art is infused by the power and majesty of the natural world. Dyer continues to challenge himself, his latest body of impressive work is inspired by English painter J.M.W. Turner. In Geoff Dyer’s own words, “lately my work’s been evolving, less narrative and more concerned with light.” Elements of the Tasmanian West Coast evoke Turner, with rapid changes of light due to the Roaring 40s and climatic conditions, however these works are more about a journey through a landscape rather than a specific place.
Later over a glass of red wine, Dyer recounted the many interesting subjects he has painted for the Archibald Prize over the years…his great mate Richard Flanagan, the Man Booker Prize winning author and subject of Dyer’s 2003 Archibald Prize winning piece; David Walsh, super-collector and founder of the acclaimed MONA (Hobart), subject of arguably Dyer’s greatest portrait in the 2011 Archibald Prize. Despite this achievement in a portrait prize, Geoff Dyer continues to explore the landscape through his paintings.
His next goal is the Wynne Prize.
An 11 times finalist of Australia’s major landscape painting prize, to be awarded this would no doubt be a fitting accolade for one of Australia’s greatest painters.
Would you like to view more works by Geoff Dyer? Feel free to contact us on (02) 9660 7799 or [email protected]