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Brushes with History - Masters of Watercolour

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The world’s oldest painting medium, watercolour has remained a significant source of inspiration and expression for many artists, as it was for J.M.W. Turner, Thomas Girtin, Alexander Cozens, John Constable, Eugene Delacroix, Paul Cezanne and Picasso, among other luminaries in the history of art. The freshness of a diluted pigment diffused over a responsive paper can create magnificent myriad effects of luminosity and translucence not possible in any other medium. ‘Brushes with History: Masters of Watercolour Ninety Years of the Australian Watercolour Institute’, by Linda van Nunen and David van Nunen, with a foreword by Dr. Michael Brand, Director, Art Gallery of New South Wales, is a lavishly illustrated, deluxe edition produced by Australia’s premier art publisher, in celebration of the 90th anniversary of the Australian Watercolour Institute, the country’s first and foremost national society of professional watercolourists. Throughout its history, the AWI has promoted the practice of watercolour through national and international exhibitions of the finest paintings produced in the medium, numbering among its members and exhibitors many of Australia’s celebrated artists — from Arthur Streeton, Hans Heysen, Rupert Bunny, Blamire Young, Margaret Preston and Thea Proctor to some of the most important contemporary painters working today in Australia, England, Scotland, China and America. This 220-page publication both chronicles the history of Australia’s pre-eminent watercolour society and surveys the diversity of techniques, styles and subject matter in the evolution of watercolour over the past nine decades. Linda and David van Nunen have produced not just a volume of the work of current members but have documented in depth the activities of artists who have been major figures both in the history of the Australian Watercolour Institute and this country’s visual arts culture. It is through their efforts that the achievements of these past members will now not be forgotten. It is a must-have book for anyone with an interest in watercolour. Colour illustrations

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