Exhibition held at Macquarie University Art Gallery from 18 July - 8 September 2012
Rollin Schlicht - A Man for all Seasons. A Retrospective is the first exhibition to reexamine the artist's work spanning from 1966-2008. The exhibition will commence with the geometric abstractions sprung from the heady days of the Central Street Gallery period through to the lyrical colour field and figurative works of the 1970s. Patrick McCaughey, a leading art critic of the time deemed Schlicht the 'most accomplished and versatile of the young and skilled hard edge painters working in Sydney' making Australian art 'look less tired, almost exiting and certainly much more hopeful.' In 1970, Schlicht created the masterpiece work Nabis - a diffusion of light, colour and decorative form in homage to the Nabis artists of the late nineteenth century. Attaining such intensity in production throughout this phase, Schlicht was considered to be one of Australia's most prodigious artists of that period. Yet by the 1980s, Schlicht retreated from painting to pursue his original training as an architect. He did not return to painting until the late 1990s, when he had secured residence and studio in the bush land suburb of Mount Kuring-gai, located on the outskirts of Sydney. Within this setting, Schlicht's strong impulse to paint led him working in the studio most days, resulting in a highly productive and flourishing period. Investing fresh ways of using abstraction as a means of bridging the lacuna between the regional and the universal, in a complex synthesis of ideas and approaches gathered over a lifetime, these later paintings signify the artist's finest and most compelling works. Rollin Schlicht has left an important legacy within the schema of Australian art and cultural history. As part of the Central Street core, Schlicht was instrumental in bringing international ideas to Australian shores in the 1960s, through his work as both an artist and architect.