Arts / ‘Ethereal beauty’ in Hanley’s silverpoint drawings

‘Light Moves’ by Gordon Hanley

VETERAN Brisbane artist, Gordon Hanley, is staging a unique exhibition at Aarwun Gallery in Gold Creek.

Billed as ‘a golden opportunity in art’, this new body of work features over 40 drawings in 24ct gold, silver and platinum, as well as a collection of bird paintings in watercolour.

‘A Dance With The Dark Side,’ by Gordon Hanley

For many art buyers, Hanley is probably best known for his paintings of old houses and humorous scenes from his childhood that were reproduced in almost every conceivable format – from prints, placemats, plates, calendars, biscuit tins and tapestries.

Between the years of 1998-2005, he was Wildlife Artist in Residence at Queensland Museum and was commissioned to create the ‘Jewels of Nature,’ a large limited edition folio illustrating the parrots of the world.

But around 2008, Hanley began experimenting with drawings in silver on paper, and then in 24ct. gold,  a medium which had reached its apogee in the 15th and 16th centuries during the Renaissance.

After a sell-out exhibition at the Morpeth Gallery in the Hunter Valley, he hasn’t looked back, with art investors clambering  to acquire his ‘Silverpoint’ work, created with a silver stylus or wire directly on to paper coated with a specially prepared ground.

“As a matter of artistic preference, I am drawn to photorealism,” says Hanley, “in this particular medium, that in itself presents an enormous challenge, but portraits and figure drawings created in gold have an ethereal beauty quite unlike those produced by other drawing media.”

As he explained to “CityNews”: “They look like B&W drawings or photos until you reflect light from the surface.”

Hanley was recently awarded the accolade of “Living Master” by the US-based Art Renewal Centre, the first silverpoint artist in the world to be so named.

Gordon Hanley, at Aarwun Gallery11 Federation Square, Gold Creek, Nicholls, opens with a “meet-the-artist’ function from 6pm, Friday, November 16, then the exhibition continues daily.



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Helen Musa
“CityNews” arts editor

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