Informit article: Preoccupied with the circuitry of the species

While selected articles are available in full on this website, all Arena Quarterly, Arena Magazine and Arena Journal articles are available for purchase in PDF format from Informit.


The highly original art of polymath Edwin Tanner

‘No moons, no cows, no trees’, wrote Edwin Tanner of his work in a 1962 statement. ‘Not even a burnt stump or the inevitable parrot.’ This slightly pugnacious rejection of parochialism and the lack of easily recognisable Australian motifs in his art may have something to do with Tanner’s relatively low profile. Critics have also overlooked him: he is absent from Robert Hughes’ and Bernard Smith’s Australian art histories. Tanner was Welsh by birth, arriving in Australia as a young child – accounts differ as to whether he was eight or just three when the family left Wales – but the individuality of his style rests on more than merely this, as Anthony Fitzpatrick’s beautifully curated exhibition at the TarraWarra Museum of Art, held earlier this year, demonstrated.

Details / PDF:

The full-text PDF of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Support Arena

Independent publications and critical thought are more important than ever. Arena has never relied on or received government funding. It has sustained its activities largely through the voluntary work and funding provided by editors and supporters. If Arena is to continue and to expand its readership, we need your support to do it.