‘River Gum’ is a hand-tinted lithographic print created by Adrienne Gaha in collaboration with Australian Print Workshop in Victoria. The fluid marks of printmaking lend themselves to the Rorschach quality that often characterises Gaha’s paintings, making a familiar River Gum Tree appear mysterious and fugitive. Gaha’s persistent interest in the way light can be used to abstract a scene and create drama is present in this new work, where the sun sets behind the Gum and throws its form and reflection into silhouette.
In the words of London-based critic Brooke Fitzsimons, “The images she makes are evanescent. Like mirages, the forms seem unstable and transitional; at once, holding shape and dissolving back into paint. It is the oscillation between these two states that sets up an elemental tension in all of the works here. … An adept draughtsperson, she displays control of the imagery on the one hand and abandoned, spontaneous mark making on the other.
Adrienne Gaha is a Sydney-born painter who lives between Australia, France and the UK. She has exhibited both domestically and internationally since 1986, and features in the collections of major institutions including National Gallery of Victoria and Art Gallery of Western Australia. Her works are an energetic fusion of abstraction and figuration, developed through references to art history that seem to rise to the surface like revealed pentimenti.