Adam Nudelman

All those things we are

19 January — 6 February 2015

Born 1967
Lives and works in Victoria

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Represented by nanda\hobbs

Outback Surrealism

There is something deeply haunted about the Australian outback. Something buried in its bones and soil. Not the tourist-driven outback of Broken Hill, but the silent moments betwixt bush and farmland, the moments where man has been, left a mark, and then vanished again, leaving strange spirits to return.

As one who has traversed numerous remote landscapes around the globe, I return again and again to the sheer sense of the ghostly, the unheimlich captured so brilliantly by Sir Sidney Nolan in Pretty Polly Mine (1948), Russell Drysdale in Red Landscape (1945) and, more recently, Philip Hunter in his Wimmera works. Adam Nudelman joins their ranks in exploring the untenable—and almost—unpaintable ‘reality’ of the Australian land.

This strangeness exudes more than the brutal colonialist underpinnings endured by early settlers or the slaughter of the Indigenous people (although that too adds a further level of haunting). Even Old Blokes, born and bred in the outback and not given to flights of fancy, admit the same. It is the sense of void, of inherent emptiness, despite the rural fences and structures. It is this void that Nudelman captures with such immense power.

A part of this is Australia’s heritage. A land where crows gouge and tear dying livestock, a land of the battler and the cobber, a harsh but extraordinarily beautiful land, as our earliest poets attested. We celebrate it without often realising it; in books—Gerald Murnane’s The Plains, Colleen McCullough’s The Thorn Birds; in film, from Wake in Fright to The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith; and most of all in our visual arts, from von Guerard to Nudelman.

It was surreal before colonial intervention and, as Nudelman’s work attests, all that had to be added was the cargo-cult cache of off-kilter fences and misplaced gates and the strange, unexplainable and incongruous symmetry seen in When all the world’s asleep and throughout his oeuvre. Nudelman’s symmetrical motifs sit like alien artifacts at odds with their environs, evoking a strangely nostalgic, even melancholic, air. We are, perhaps, reminded of our own alien presence upon the land, the simple fact that we are all ‘visitors’ or ‘immigrants’ leaving transitory marks to embellish some sense of ‘belonging’.

Australia, perhaps more so than any other landmass, is a country made up largely of visitors, of immigrants from far and wide—Irish, English, German, Chinese, Jewish and Vietnamese to name but a few. Often rendered homeless by circumstance, or settling by choice, each leaves a mark upon the land. The rusting symmetry of When all the world’s asleep is an Australian Stonehenge, as mysterious in its way as those pre-Celtic rocks.

In the Outback one often encounters the surreal, the unexpected and the inexplicable. Perhaps the structures in Beyond the turn or A Moment out of reach have their functions or perhaps they are simply religious icons from a long-forgotten faith. But those who erected these structures seem long gone, ghostly memories under vast skies.  

Ashley Crawford
2015

 

 

\ Exhibition featured works

Adam Nudelman

7 Hours, 7 Days or 7 Years

2013 \ Oil on panel \ 45.5x60.5cm

SOLD

Adam Nudelman

A sea of tears

2013 \ Oil on canvas \ 81.5x66cm

SOLD

Adam Nudelman

All those things we are

2014 \ Oil on linen \ 153x137.5cm

SOLD

Adam Nudelman

Always the last to know

2013 \ Oil on canvas \ 60.5x111.5cm

SOLD

Adam Nudelman

And some called it paradise

2014 \ Oil on canvas \ 120x96.5cm

SOLD

Adam Nudelman

Before the grace of you

2014 \ Oil on linen \ 171x300cm

SOLD

Adam Nudelman

Beyond the Turn

2013 \ Oil on canvas \ 45.8x38cm

Adam Nudelman

Constantly waiting for change

2013 \ Oil on linen \ 122x92cm

SOLD

Adam Nudelman

If only my heart could do the thinking, August 15 1970

2013 \ Oil on linen \ 122x91.5cm

SOLD

Adam Nudelman

Out of the fallen

2013 \ Oil on canvas \ 66.5x96.8cm

SOLD

Adam Nudelman

The state of the heart

2013 \ Oil on canvas \ 81.5x66cm

SOLD

Adam Nudelman

We take comfort in the idea of a paradise

2013 \ Oil on canvas \ 81.5x66cm

SOLD

Adam Nudelman

When all the world's asleep

2013 \ Oil on canvas \ 45.8x61cm

SOLD

\ Other exhibitions

Summer Show

Group Exhibition

5 December — 22 December 2018

Jun Chen

New Spring

8 November — 24 November 2018

James Drinkwater

Looking for Urchins and Louis Ferrari

9 October — 3 November 2018

Contact Us

to find out more about All those things we are.

12 - 14 Meagher Street Chippendale, NSW 2008
Opening Hours
9am - 5pm Monday to Friday 11am - 4pm Saturday Christmas dates: Please note the gallery will be closed from 4pm on Saturday 22 December. We reopen at 9am on Wednesday, 9 January 2019.