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Reflections

Iced, 2006
oil on canvas
110 x 115.5 cm
Purchased with funds donated
by Meredith Hinchliffe 2008

Derek O'CONNOR

born 1957

Derek O’Connor was born in Warwickshire, England and migrated with his family to Australia (Adelaide) in 1969. He studied art in Adelaide and after a period of travel and work came to Canberra to study at the ANU School of Art. Since graduation in 1988 he has had considerable success as a painter, with solo exhibitions every year for the past decade and a half, in Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra. O’Connor has been selected for many group exhibitions, including the 1993 Moët & Chandon Touring Exhibition and It’s a beautiful day: New painting in Australia 2 at the Ian Potter Museum of Art, Melbourne and the Art Gallery of New South Wales, 2002-03. His work is held in many private and corporate collections as well as those of the National Gallery of Victoria and the National Gallery of Australia. In 2007-08 the Canberra Museum and Gallery held a survey exhibition of Derek O’Connor’s paintings and collages, in tandem with a survey of the work of his contemporary Marie Hagerty.


O’Connor is a highly significant artist of the Canberra region. Essentially an expressionist painter with a sophisticated and rigorous practice, his influences include Jackson Pollock, Philip Guston, Frank Auerbach and Gerhard Richter, and also Renaissance and Baroque painters: he is a great reader for whom art history and theory are crucial to his practice. Iced is exemplary of O’Connor’s assured manipulation of paint on canvas: intense, fluid, vibrating, resonant and elusive.


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