Issue 156 | March 2012
Renaissance | Play | Members news | Events | Exclusive offer & giveaway
01 Renaissance nights In conjunction with the
Enlighten Festival

Over four magical autumn nights see Canberra in a whole new light. Check out the full Enlighten Festival 2012 program at

As part of Enlighten the NGA comes alive with many events during March including special late night viewing of the Renaissance exhibition, open until 10pm on Friday 2nd, Saturday 3rd, Friday 9th & Saturday 10th of March, the last timed entry to Renaissance will be at 9pm. With free live music and performances.

Summer’s hottest venue, Sculpture Bar will be open all four nights from 5pm, featuring some of Canberra’s best DJs.

Renaissance tickets available at or
132 849.

Follow up your evening viewing and come along and see stunning projections of Renaissance images as they are appear on the NGA building from 8:30pm.

There is still time to book our San Remo Renaissance Chef and Curator Dinner for Saturday 10 March. Combine your love of art and food with an evening viewing of Renaissance, followed by an Italian inspired three-course dinner with fine Italian wines.

Title image: attributed to Marco del Buono and Apollonio di Giovanni 'Love procession' c.1440s (detail) Accademia Carrara, Bergamo, bequest of Antonietta Noli, widow of Carlo Marenzi 1901

02 Renaissance
Director Ron Radford and Curator Lucina Ward discuss six key works from Renaissance: 15th & 16th century paintings from the
Accademia Carrara,

View Renaissance video on Youtube
| More NGA videos



03 Renaissance: St Jerome Simeran Maxwell, Exhibition Assistant for Renaissance, discusses Saint Jerome

The Renaissance saw an abundance of images of saints, some chosen for their personal resonance as patron or name saint of an individual donor or church. Many, however, were simply popular and commonly celebrated throughout the Renaissance—such as Saint Jerome.

Four paintings of Saint Jerome appear in Renaissance, proving his popularity throughout 15th and 16th century Europe. The earliest is by Pseudo Pier Francesco Fiorentino. Saint Jerome and a Franciscan c.1455–60 shows Jerome wrapped in red robes with a Franciscan monk and two lions. This and Zanetto Bugatto’s Saint Jerome removing a thorn from the lion’s paw 1461–63 show variations of the legend where either Jerome or a monk instructed by him removed a thorn from a lion’s paw. Both paintings are set in a rocky, mountainous landscape with Jerome dressed in a cardinal’s habit. The landscape is indicative of the time Jerome spent as a hermit. The Golden Legend, a popular collection of saints’ tales, refers to Jerome as one of Pope Damasus’ cardinals, while a variation refers to him as a ‘special secretary’.
In any case the red robes are a common identifier of Saint Jerome in art.

Giorgio Schiavone
'Saint Jerome' c.1458–60
Accademia Carrara, Bergamo
Legacy of Guglielmo Lochis 1866

Giorgio Schiavone’s painting is one of pair—the other is of Saint Alexis. Both are shown holding their attributes in Classical niches with Italianate landscapes behind. Jerome holds the accoutrements of a writer and scholar: a book, quills, ink and a glasses case. He is famed for his Latin transition of the Bible and is the patron saint of scholars, students, librarians, booksellers, and translators.

04 Members news

On the 3 February we held our members Renaissance curators dinner. The evening started with an introduction of the exhibition by co-ordinating curator Christine Dixon, followed by an exclusive viewing of the works.  Members were then treated to a three course dinner in Gandel Hall created by executive chef James Kidman from his new cookbook Renaissance table.  We would especially like to thank the ANU school of music for the wonderful entertainment during the evening.

If you haven’t yet had a chance to experience this wonderful exhibition at a special members event, we have our Afternoon Aperitifs and Antipasto event taking place on March 18.  With an introduction from Christine Dixon and special guests David Dale and Lucio Galletto, your ticket also includes entry to the exhibition.  To book for this event please contact us on 02 6240 6528

We have had an overwhelming response to our member’s acquisition fund 2011-12, where this year members have the opportunity to support the acquisition of Margaret Olley’s Hawkesbury wildflowers and pears 1973.  This striking work is currently on display outside the membership office in the Gallery.  We thank all our members who have already donated - if you would like to make a donation please contact the membership office on 02 6240 6528.

05 Event
highlights Go to calendar
for all events




children FOR MEMBERS






06 Play Childrens gallery

What is going on in the Childrens Gallery?
A fantastical fountain. Subverted street-signs. An invisible bird. Three red balls tossed into a blue sky. A tower of toys. A lost cloud. A somersaulting schoolgirl. People are smiling.

Play celebrates artists who look at the world with a smile - an exhibition for the young and the young-at-heart.

Good artists seek the truth of things. Everything they experience is a possible starting place. Henri Matisse observed that it takes great courage to look at things as they really are, as though seeing them for the first time. We are born with this clarity, but over time learned conventions obscure our ‘innocent eye’. Children create things out of nothing: turning empty boxes into castles and clouds into dragons. They are curious and inventive. At heart, they are just like artists.

Title image: John Baldessari a sheet from 'Throwing three balls in the air to get a straight line (best of thirty-six attempts)' 1973 (detail) artist book National Gallery of Australia, Canberra

This exhibition reminds us of the importance of play in an artist’s practice, and in our lives. We invite you to share a joyous journey to see the world afresh, with works by artists including John Baldessari, Mike Brown, Richard Tipping, Robert Rooney, Peter Tully and Louise Weaver.

Play embraces painting, photography, prints and sculpture from across the NGA’s remarkable collection and is on display in the Childrens gallery until 24 June.

Richard Tipping 'Sing' 2004 print Gordon Darling Australia Pacific Print Fund, 2008 National Gallery of Australia, Canberra

07 New

On February 24 the Gallery unveiled a major international acquisition; a stunning large scale work titled Oceania, the sea by Henri Matisse. The work was purchased with funds generously provided by National Gallery of Australia Council Member Mr Timothy Fairfax AM.

The Gallery has sought to acquire Matisse’s Oceania, the sea for some time. The magnificent four metre canvas and silk screen work will now form a pair to the Gallery’s Oceania, the sky acquired in 1990.

Oceania, the sea is in excellent condition. The work is signed and dedicated to the artist’s son, Pierre, and was acquired from the Matisse family. It is a key work of modern art, a masterpiece of Matisse’s late career.

Henri Matisse's Oceania, the seais now hanging in the International galleries on level 1.

For those in Brisbane Oceania, the sky is currently on display at Queensland Art Gallery as part of the exhibition Matisse: Drawing Life until 4 March.

View more of the Gallery's recent acquisitions on our website.

Director Ron Radford and Council Member Timothy Fairfax AM at the unveiling of Henri Matisse's 'Oceania, the sea' 1946

08 National Visual Arts Education Conference 2012

The National Gallery of Australia in conjunction with the National Portrait Gallery hosted the first national conference for visual art educators on 23 – 25 January 2012. The program included national and international keynote speakers including Graeme Sullivan, art education academic from Pennsylvania State University and Tim Rollins, New York visual artist who has worked with young people from the South Bronx for over 30 years.

Australian artists Fiona Foley and Hossein Valamanesh also gave keynote presentations and Dannie Melor, Daniel von Sturmer, and Mini Graff were involved in panel discussions.

Over 60 speakers from around Australia gave papers on their research. Over 220 pre-school, primary, middle school, secondary and tertiary educators as well as museum educators attended the three day conference from all states and territories in Australia.

Image: Fiona Foley speaking at the National Visual Arts Education Conference in January

In addition to keynote papers and panel sessions, the program included studio workshops at the Australian National University School of Art, Canberra Glassworks, Megalo Print Studio and Gallery and tours to other cultural institutions in Canberra.

The feedback from the conference has been overwhelmingly positive – thank you to all of those involved and to all those that attended who helped make the conference such a huge success.

View images of the 2012 Conference on Flickr.

09 Around
the country
interstate events
and travelling

New South Wales
Space invaders: australian . street . stencils . posters . paste-ups . zines . stickers | Western Plains Cultural Centre, Dubbo, 18 November – 18 March 2012.

The Elaine and Jim Wolfensohn gift: Red and Yellow cases | Manning Regional Art Gallery, Tarree NSW, 2 March – 9 April 2012

The Elaine and Jim Wolfensohn gift: Blue case | Arts OutWest Inc, Bathurst NSW, 14 March –
30 April 2012

South Australia
The Elaine and Jim Wolfensohn gift: 1888 Melbourne cup | City of Holdfast Bay Glenelg SA,
2 February – 14 March 2012

The Elaine and Jim Wolfensohn gift: 1888 Melbourne cup | Civic Hall Galleries Port Lincoln SA, 15 March – 18 April 2012

In the spotlight: Anton Bruehl photographs 1920s–1950s | QUT Art Museum, Brisbane, QLD, 18 February – 15 April 2012

Australian portraits 1880–1960 | Gladstone Regional Art Gallery, Gladstone QLD, 11 February – 12 May 2012

Anton Bruehl 'Knitted-to-order sport clothes' 1932 Gift of American Friends of the National Gallery of Australia, Inc., New York, NY, USA, made possible with the generous support of Anton Bruehl Jr, 2006.
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra

10 Join us
social media Are you on Facebook, Twitter Google+ or Flickr?

Enrich your experience of the National Gallery of Australia by joining us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Flickr. Benefits include reminders for upcoming events, content that accompanies exhibitions such as video, access to photos, NGA Shop news including new product arrivals and sales.

We look forward to connecting with you and hearing your comments.

11 Stefano
Lunchtime talk
Tuesday 20 March

Jewellery designer and classically trained craftsman Stefano Canturi has been creating fine jewellery for over 25 years. Regarded as an attentive interpreter of the spirit of our time, Stefano Canturi is inspired by history, engineering, architecture and art. The Renaissance period in particular inspired the designer as a young 16 year old apprentice through his discovery of the Renaissance artist and goldsmith Benvenuto Cellini. Canturi mastered his art form with inspiration from the ways of Renaissance artists, who mastered their art through excellence in craftsmanship.

Lorenzo Lotto 'Portrait of Lucina Brembati' c.1518–23 Accademia Carrara, Bergamo Purchased from the Countess Degnamerita Grumelli Albani of Bergamo 1882

Join Stefano Canturi and Lucina Ward, Curator International Painting and Sculpture as they discuss the jewellery appearing in the works of Renaissance: 15th & 16th century paintings from the Accademia Carrara,
. Followed by afternoon tea in the Sculpture Garden Restaurant.

Tuesday 20 March, 1.00 pm
$55 members; $60 guests
Bookings: 02 6240 6528


12 Special
offer Hilliard Ensemble & Australian Chamber Orchestra

The Hilliard Ensemble & Australian Chamber Orchestra
Saturday 10 March,
Llewellyn Hall, ANU, Canberra

A mesmerising collaboration between two of the world’s finest ensembles, this concert interweaves music from Medieval and Renaissance Europe with contemporary music, Russian Orthodox chant and luscious Romantic music for strings. View details and music clips at the Australian Chamber Orchestra website.

NGA members receive 10% discount on full price tickets. Enter promotion code 'Gallery' when you book online.

We have one double pass to the concert to giveaway.
Respond by email to to enter.
The winner will be notified by email by COB Monday 5 March.

13 Subscribers
giveaway 10 double passes to
a Canberra preview
screening of 'Headhunters'
to be won

Headhunters is a film based on the book by acclaimed author Jo Nesbo and from the producers of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

This heist thriller is about the charming villain Roger Brown, a man who seems to have it all: he is Norway´s most successful head hunter, married to beautiful gallery owner Diana, owns a magnificent house – and is living larger than he should. Roger Brown is also playing at the dangerous game of art theft.
At a gallery opening, his wife introduces him to the Dutchman Clas Greve. Greve is in possession of one of the most sought-after paintings in modern art history. Roger sees his chance to become financially independent, and starts planning his biggest hit ever.

We have 10 double passes to a special preview screening of the film Headhunters at Dendy Canberra on Monday 5 March. Respond by email to to enter. Winners will be notified by email by COB Friday 2 March.

View the trailer for 'Headhunters' on Youtube.

14 Canberra

Canberra’s leading shopping mall Canberra Centre provides the perfect destination for some retail therapy over the holidays with all the big brands in fashion to chose from, a range of restaurants and Dendy cinemas.