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Oil on canvas Signed and dated 64 lower right
Provenance Darlinghurst Galleries, Sydney; purchased by Elder Smith Goldsbrough Mort 1965-6; transferred to Elders IXL in 1989 Exhibited Sali Herman - New Guinea Paintings, Darlinghurst Galleries, Sydney, 30 March - 24 April 1965, cat. 10 Swiss-born, Sali Herman arrived in Sydney in 1938 and served as an official Australian war artist during 1945-46. In the 1950s and '60s, living at the heart of the vibrant artistic community in Potts Point, he became especially known for his evocative streetscapes. However he also travelled to the far north of Australia and, in August 1964, to New Guinea. As well as attending the Goroka Show, a vast two-day song gathering in the Highlands of tribes from all over the country, he also spent time in Port Moresby, Koki and on Buka Island. Bougainville and Buka are the two main islands of the Solomon Islands chain, part of North Solomons Province, originally colonised by Germany, but actually controlled by Papua New Guinea; for the time being. When this work was shown in his one-person exhibition the following year, Herman told a reporter for The Daily Mirror, 'I wanted to do something new. I don't like to repeat myself. So I went to New Guinea. I had Bill Dobell in mind... But then I was invited to the Goroka Show... The paintings at the Darlinghurst gallery reflect my emotions, the result of this extraordinary experience'.(1) We are grateful for assistance in cataloguing this work from Barry Pearce, Senior Curator of Australian Art at the Art Gallery of New South Wales. (1) 29 March 1965.
70.1 by 88.2 cm