Geoff Dyer, King River IV, 2000
oil on linen 120 x 96 cm
Geoff Dyer (b.1947) is arguablyTasmania’s best-known contemporary painter. Born in Hobart, Geoff graduated from the Tasmania School of Art in 1968. He begun exhibiting soon after, balancing his time between the studio and teaching art, firstly on King Island, then Launceston School of Art and later at Burnie Technical College. In 1980,Geoff begun painting full time, spending the next thirty years travelling regularly between Sydney, Melbourne and Hobart.
Geoff’s work has been hung in the New SouthWalesArt Gallery over twenty times as a finalist in the Archibald prize, the Wynne Prize and the Sulman Prize. Geoff became an Archibald finalist for the first time in 1993 with a portrait of environmentalist and Federal Green’s leader, Bob Brown. His most recent hung portrait, from 2011, includes portrait of David Walsh, founder of MONA. Most notably, Geoff won the Archibald Prize in 2003 with a portrait of writer, conservationist and friend, Richard Flanagan. A selection of these portraits, featuring prominent Tasmanians, were exhibited at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery from July to October 2019.
Through his expressive use of paint, Dyer captures the complexity and raw beauty that underpins the Tasmanian landscape experience, becoming an important part of Tasmania’s cultural history. Dyer has been represented by Despard Gallery since 1999.
“With a career as a full-time painter spanning forty years, Geoff first exhibited with Despard Gallery as part of our annual summer group show in 1999. Twenty years on, and eleven solo shows later, Geoff continues to push himself creatively, his evocative oils resonating to a broad audience of both new and seasoned followers. Geoff’s paintings manage to eclipse time, remains vivid and contemporary. This signature visual strength and bold interpretation of the landscape cements his standing as Tasmania’s greatest living artist.” – Steven Joyce Director, Despard Gallery
“Like Turner, Dyer works with ‘inspired unconsciousness’, but also with a deep Romantic sense of the landscape. He accepts that a view of the bush or the beach can be a vehicle for strong feelings. Painting is method of expressing those feelings in a way that can remain impersonal and, indeed, universal.” – John McDonald, writer and art critic
*Purchased from the artist following a solo exhibition in 2000 by Dyer at the Carnegie Gallery, Hobart. The painting is signed lower right.