Donation of notable artist’s work to Art Gallery Collection

Garry Shead painting

Rockhampton Art Gallery’s nationally renowned collection of modern and contemporary Australian art now has one more notable artist represented with the donation of The staircase of flesh, by Garry Shead.

Known as a narrative painter, printmaker and ceramic artist, Garry Shead trained at the National Art School, Sydney. A finalist in the Doug Moran Portrait Prize of 1987, he won the Archibald Prize in 1993 for his portrait of an old friend, Sydney publisher Tom Thompson. His works are held in the collections of National Gallery of Australia, Canberra; the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney; the Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide; and several regional galleries, but to date was not represented in Rockhampton Art Gallery collection.

Chair of Rockhampton Regional Council’s Community Services Committee, Cr. Rose Swadling said that The staircase of flesh is a significant addition to the Rockhampton Art Gallery collection.

“A special thank you to Philip Bacon AM for enabling this work to become part of Rockhampton Art Gallery’s nationally significant collection. It really does show the power of donations.

“The work has been donated under the Federal Government’s Cultural Gift Program which offers tax incentives to encourage people to donated cultural items to public art galleries, museums, libraries and archives in Australia,” Cr. Swadling said.

Previously held in a private collection, the work was directed to Rockhampton Art Gallery by gallerist and philanthropist Philip Bacon AM to be gifted to Rockhampton Art Gallery collection.

“It’s no secret to say that Rockhampton Art Gallery collection is outstanding.” Mr Bacon said.

“I know this collection very well due to my long history of working with and supporting the Gallery. When I was approached to consider the best long-term home for this donation, I had no doubt that the right place was the Rockhampton Art Gallery collection.

“Rockhampton Art Gallery’s new $31.5M facility needs significant art works like this. The Cultural Gift Program is a mutually beneficial way of contributing to the public art galleries, museums, libraries and archives in Australia.” Mr Bacon said.

Mr Bacon has a long history with Rockhampton Art Gallery, including being a leading advisor to the formation of The Gold Award, and most recently was instrumental in Rockhampton Art Gallery identifying and funding to acquire Ian Fairweather’s Painting II.

Rockhampton Art Gallery is owned and operated by Rockhampton Regional Council.

Image | Garry Shead (b. 1942) | The staircase of flesh 2006 | oil on linen | Through the Rockhampton Art Gallery for tax deductibility through the Cultural Gifts Program | 2018.002

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