Lucy Culliton

Lucy Culliton is an artist imbued with the collector’s impulse to amass and record, a hunter who finds her treasures in the theatre of the everyday. Cacti, mechanical engines, antique bottles and light-bulbs have each in turn gripped her attention, leading to an intense focus on a single subject which borders on the devotional.

A realist by temperament, Culliton extracts the objective truth from her chosen forms with accuracy and precision, but never at the cost of painterly expression. Each leaf must reveal its botanical parent, each feather a particular bird. Animating the still-life genre to suit her means, Culliton’s paintings become celebrations of bounty redolent with luscious colour, intricate pattern and the powerful rhythms of repetition.

Australian rural culture has provided rich material for the painter whose tributes to the bakers, knitters and breeders competing in the Royal Easter Show brought her work to national attention. Putting down roots in the Monaro region in 2007, Culliton has found inspiration in the cultivated garden and its tapestry of weeds. An enthusiastic portraitist, she has also welcomed an expanding coterie of domestic and farm animals to her canvas. Meanwhile, the sleeping giant of the Australian landscape lies in wait for her brush.

A graduate of the National Art School in Sydney, Culliton was recognised in a major survey at Mosman Art Gallery in 2014. Her work is held in the National Gallery of Australia, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Macquarie Bank and Parliament House collections. She is a regular exhibitor in leading public awards, winning the 2006 Portia Geach Memorial Award. Culliton is a regular finalist in the Archibald, Wynne and Sulman Prizes at the Art Gallery of NSW.

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