Artist biography

Brett Whiteley born 1939 [- 1992]

Australian painter, born in Sydney. Attended night classes in drawing at the Julian Ashton Art School, while working during the day at an advertising agency. Awarded the Italian travelling scholarship for Australia and spent 1960-1 in Italy. Moved in 1961 to London, and had his first one-man exhibition at the Matthiesen Gallery, London, 1962. Painted first in a near-abstract style, with fluid, interlocking forms, then turned increasingly to figuration. Awarded a travelling scholarship by the Stuyvesant Foundation 1964. Subsequently made many paintings with images of sex, violence, political themes etc., with swirling forms and sometimes incorporating sculptural fibreglass shapes, photographs and other collage elements. Awarded a Harkness Foundation scholarship in 1967 and lived for a year and a half in New York, then for a year in Fiji; returned to Australia 1969. Lives in Sydney.

Published in:
Ronald Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, p.762