DETAIL: Grace COSSINGTON SMITH,  'Interior in yellow', 1964, oil on composition board, National Gallery of Australia
Grace COSSINGTON SMITH | Bonfire in the bush

Australia 1892 – Australia 1984
UK, Europe 1912-14; UK, Italy 1949-51
Bonfire in the bush c.1937
oil on paperboard
44.7 (h) x 36.5 (w) cm
framed 59.9 (h) x 47.6 (w) x 3.8 (d) cm
Art Gallery of New South Wales Gift of Patrick White 1973
VIEW: Article |

Around 1937, the year before her father died, Cossington Smith painted Bonfire in the bush. The work locates him at the bottom of their garden with her sisters Madge and Diddy, engaged in one of his favourite pastimes – burning leaves in a bonfire. In its feeling for family ritual on the cusp of the domesticated garden and the Australian bush, this painting later meant a great deal to the author Patrick White who initially acquired it.

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