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Australian Abstract

Amber Creswell Bell


A vivid survey of over forty contemporary Australian abstract painters by curator and bestselling author Amber Creswell Bell

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There is no single neat definition of abstract art. It makes no attempt to represent reality; instead it has its own visual language using shape, colour and form with no rules. An explosion of creative expression and gestural force, Australian Abstract explores the constantly evolving genre and how it offers unparalleled artistic freedom, inviting deeply personal connection and interpretation from both artist and viewer. Works often straddle a mid-point between recognition and the sensed experience through the materiality of paint encompassing a pastiche of styles.

Drawing on extensive interviews Amber Creswell Bell examines the diverse practices of more than forty contemporary abstract painters, documenting a repertoire of styles, subjects, visions and philosophies. Some compare abstract art to music, particularly jazz; others are inspired by nature, science and geometry; and some simply relish the opportunity to express complex emotions in a way words cannot. What unites these extraordinary artists, however, is the conviction that this form of expression chose them.

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Product Information

Book Details

Format: Hardback

Size: 29.0 x 23.0 cm

Extent: 272 pp

Illustrations: 233

Publication date: 20 July 2023

ISBN: 9781760762858

About the Author

Amber Creswell Bell is a Sydney-based arts, design and lifestyle writer, and curator. She is currently the Director of Emerging Art for Michael Reid galleries. Australian Abstract is Amber's fifth book with Thames & Hudson. Her previous books include Clay (2016), A Painted Landscape (2018), the award-winning Still Life (2021) and Art Design Life, a monograph on artist Ken Done (also 2021).