Close up on Rosalie Gascoigne

Close up on Rosalie Gascoigne

Jenny Butler
Mar 3, 2009

030309rose01.jpgOver the weekend we had the opportunity to visit the Rosalie Gascoigne exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria. We were blown away, impressive works from an impressive lady. Rosalie Gascoigne didn't start expressing herself through art until she was in her mid forties and was 57 when she held her first exhibition. Today she is one of Australia's most iconic contemporary artists. So how did she get there?

Rosalie studied to be a secondary teacher before emigrating to Australia at age 26. After marrying Ben Gascoigne they set up their home in the scientific community of Mount Stromlo which is located just outside of Canberra. While raising their three children Rosalie Gascoigne took an interest in flower arranging, but then moved on to the more challenging Japanese variation 'Sogetsu Ikebana'. Still finding flowers too limiting she began experimenting with found objects such as wood, corrugated iron, road signs, crates and enamelware.

Encouragement from fellow artists lead to her first exhibition in 1974 at age 57. Within 4 years she was considered to be a major figure in the Australian art community. Over the next 20 years she continued to produce a variety of works until she died in 1999 at the age of 82.

High Density, 1992


White Garden, 1995


Lily Pond, 1993


Tree of Life, 1994


Meadow Sweet, 1991


Metropolis, 1999

The Rosalie Gascoigne exhibition is open at the National Gallery of Victoria until March 15th 2009 – entry is free.

[images from roslyn oxley9 gallery]

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