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A vivid survey of over forty contemporary Australian abstract painters by curator and bestselling author Amber Creswell Bell. There is no single neat definition of abstract art. It makes no attempt to represent reality; instead it has its own visual language using shape, colour and form with no rules. An explosion of creative expression and gestural force, Australian Abstract explores the constantly evolving genre and how it offers unparalleled artistic freedom, inviting deeply personal connection and interpretation from both artist and viewer. Works often straddle a mid-point between recognition and the sensed experience through the materiality of paint encompassing a pastiche of styles. Drawing on extensive interviews Amber Creswell Bell examines the diverse practices of more than forty contemporary abstract painters, documenting a repertoire of styles, subjects, visions and philosophies. Some compare abstract art to music, particularly jazz; others are inspired by nature, science and geometry; and some simply relish the opportunity to express complex emotions in a way words cannot. What unites these extraordinary artists, however, is the conviction that this form of expression chose them.
Tamara Dean's photography deftly explores the undercurrents of the human condition. Tamara Dean's symbolically charged compositions of contemplative stillness and explosive action see humans intimately immersed in their surroundings: submerged in water, enmeshed in undergrowth, leaping from rockfaces. Exploratory and ethereal, laden with risk and chance and adventure, her images reveal the complex inter-relationships inherent in contemporary rites of passage and our connection to nature. This book, her first published monograph, is both a retrospective of Dean's work to date and a perfect introduction for those unfamiliar with her practice. Organised chronologically by series, each introduced with a brief text by the artist, it will give readers an insight into the evolution of her work and the themes and motifs that have featured throughout her career.