Renegades or Heroes

The exhibition is based on a single painting from the Holmes à Court Collection

11 Brown Street, East Perth WA 6004
Start Date
3 August, 2003
End Date
7 September, 2003

Apotheosis of Ned Kelly  1946

A painting and key by Donald Friend.

The exhibition is based on a single painting that draws on social and political comment, identifying an iconic figure, in the person of Ned Kelly, as a deity in the presence of known public figures of the time.

The artist completed a “key” which comprises a series of sketches and written explanations identifying the characters in the painting described by Friend as; 

‘…Ned Kelly… some coalminers… a union secretary… General Blamey… an aide de camp…

 Phar Lap the racehorse with Colonel de Groot…and people such as Dame Enid Lyons and as many other ratbags as are convenient. I want also to have Ebenezer, J.T. Lang’s stud bull and other historical emblems, including the dove of peace with an atomic bomb in its claws and a brass band. Must have a band – played by politicians, artists and journalists. The picture already looks rather grand and very mad.’1

Contributors with diverse views have written texts responding to the painting and supporting sketches.

Texts by:

  • Phillip Adams
  • Emeritus Professor Geoffrey Bolton AO, Murdoch University
  • David Bromfield
  • The Most Reverend Dr P F Carnley AO, the Archbishop of Perth
  • Alan Dodge, Director, the Art Gallery of Western Australia
  • Professor John Jory, Senior Honorary Research Fellow, Classics and Ancient History, University of Western Australia
  • Kate McMillan, Visual Artist
  • Professor Margaret Seares AO, Pro ViceChancellor, University of Western Australia
  • Terri-ann White, Director, Institute of Advanced Studies, University of Western Australia

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no. 10 Gallery

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Holmes à Court Gallery
Janet Holmes à Court Collection

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PA to Janet Holmes à Court AC | Event Enquiries
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