Eveline Syme

Modernist Eveline Syme also attended the George Bell school in Toorak, Melbourne.

Master Bell’s modernist philosophy went like this: “Modern art is an artists’ personal experience expressed on a surface in terms of his material – that is, design in form – reinforced by colour, and presenting a perfect balance of opposing forces which produces a work satisfying an eternal instinct in the aesthetically receptive mind.”

Syme was more of a printmaker than painter. Here is one of her dynamic swirling prints. Sweet.

| Eveline Syme, Skating, 1929, linocut, National Gallery of Australia |

Bell’s idea was simply that artists paint because they see things that excite them and want to reproduce that feeling.

Fair enough.

This tennis and tea painting by Syme appeals to me. All composition. Dynamic symmetry learned from the cubists in Europe. The golden ratio plus a whole lot of divisions of the picture plane to make it all come together.

I like the shoes.

| Eveline Syme, Tennis and tea, 1939, oil on canvas on composition board, NGV |

Julia Ritson

Images
Cubism & Australian Art, Lesley Harding and Sue Cramer, Heide Museum catalogue, 2009
Modern Australian Women, Jane Hylton, Art Gallery of South Australia catalogue

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