Intensely Dutch in Sydney

I’m in Sydney for a few days as a family member was passing through town and needed a place to stay. The problem was that he may have swine flu or at least a bad case of regular flu. Either way, I wasn’t hanging around to catch any flu! So it was a great excuse to jump in the car and drive.

Today I went to the Art Gallery of NSW in Sydney to see Intensely Dutch, which looks at Dutch artists after world war 2, including artists from the CoBrA movement. Artists include Karel Appel, Gerrit Benner, Bram Bogart, Constant, Corneille, Edgar Fernhout, Willem de Kooning, Theo Kuijpers, Lucebert, Jaap Nanninga, Wim Oepts, Jan Riske, Jan J Schoonhoven, Bram van Velde, and Jaap Wagemaker.

dutch artist karel appel
Karel Appel
Ontmoeting (Encounter) 1951
oil on canvas, 130 x 97.5 cm
Collection: Netherlands Institute for Cultural Heritage (on loan to Centraal Museum,
Utrecht) © Karel Appel Foundation/Van Lennep Producties, Amsterdam

It was a smallish exhibition, but one that got me excited. I had just walked around the whole Art Gallery of NSW and was seriously bored (apart from a few favorite paintings that I have seen countless times). It was Intensely Dutch that got me wagging my art tail and I was probably dribbling in front of a few of the works too.

I love line, paint, texture, and childlike abandon in painting.. and this exhibition has them all. I didn’t take my camera with me and the art catalog had sold out, so I can’t show some of the works that I liked most. While Karel Appel has never been on my top ten list of painters, I would give up my car and widescreen TV to own a few of his drawings!

dutch artist lucebert
Dierentemmer (Animal tamer) 1959
oil on canvas, 88 x 128.5 cm
Stedelijk Museum, Schiedam © the estate of the artist

If you’re a lover of paint you’ll love Intensely Dutch. If I had to complain about something I would say that it needed 50 more works hanging! Oh, and running out of catalogs is no way to run a business. It’s on until the 23rd of August in Sydney at the AGNSW.

About Dion

Australian artist and observer of things.. all kinds of things. I like a wide variety of art, from the weird and wonderful to the bold and beautiful.. and everything in between.


  1. Looks like a great show!

    Too bad I can’t visit.

  2. If it looks like it was done by a ten year old it’s the artist’s problem not the viewers.

  3. Looks like the artist has no problem Mani. If any kid could apply paint like the Lucebert work above I would happily worship the child and be it’s slave for the rest of my life.

    The imagery might be child-like but the painting is anything but child-like.

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