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Fine and Contemporary

HANS HEYSEN: An Artist for All Seasons

Sir Wilhelm Ernst Hans Franz Heysen was born in Germany before his family emigrated to Australia. Hans showed early promise as an artist at school. Hans began painting and attended night art classes while he was with his father’s hardware merchant business. In 1894, he had already sold his first painting. A few years after, he joined the Easel Club and exhibited with them every year between 1895-1899. He would later receive several art prizes and sell a number of his works. Hans was an early pioneer of nature conservation, which was reflected in his works. Hans is regarded as the first non-Australian artist to paint the gum trees and other characteristics of rural life.

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Date

10 Aug 2020

Author

Jason Harris

Silver

WILLIAM EDWARDS: Silversmithing from the Other Side of the World

William Edwards was a prolific silversmith who produced work of the highest quality with the best embossing ever seen in Australia. He had the advantage of being able to produce pieces here in Australia, and also to import other work from his family or brother’s workshop. Due to his success, he secured major commissions. Edwards introduced a new range of emu egg ‘novelties’ to Australian silver. The majority of his pieces were designed in the naturalistic and Rococo revival styles. His workshop also produced a number of silver pieces, occasional gold trophies and epergnes, some of which were displayed in many international exhibitions.

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Date

16 Apr 2020

Author

Jason Harris

Silver

BASSE-TAILLE: A Technique to Mystify

Basse-taille, meaning low-cut in French, is an enamelling technique where the artist creates a low-relief pattern in precious metal such as silver and gold by engraving or chasing. The technique was developed in Italy in the 13th century, and its work enamel was very popular in Europe especially during the Gothic and Renaissance periods. This style was used in the late Middle Ages and later revived in the 17th century. And following the invention of the domestic table clock and of the watch in the 16th century, enamelling became one of the most popular forms of decoration for the dials and cases.

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Date

16 Apr 2020

Author

Jason Harris

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