Various Artists
14 October 2017 18 March 2018
Heide Modern
Lesley Harding
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This exhibition celebrates new acquisitions to the Collection from the past three years, many of which have been generously donated by artists and collectors. Among the diversity of works presented are sculptures and prints by Aleks Danko, major paintings by Peter Booth and Rick Amor, a large suspended ceiling installation by Koji Ryui, and garments with textile designs based on Mirka Mora’s art, created by the fashion house Gorman in collaboration with the artist.

Mari Funaki, Container 2008, heat-blackened mild steel, 15.5 x 4.8 x 16 cm, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne, Gift of Marian Hosking 2017, © Mari Funaki, courtesy of Gallery Funaki, Melbourne

Abstraction, a hallmark of twentieth-century modernism and significant element in contemporary art, is a particular focus of the display. Alongside large-scale abstract paintings by Jan Riske, George Johnson and Louise Forthun, these works range from the exploratory reliefs of senior artists Isabel Davies and Alex Selenitsch to the intricately patterned collages of Elizabeth Gower. A highlight is a small and understated, yet typically inventive sculpture by the late Marie Funaki, a fine example of how abstract art can stir the imagination and evoke an emotional response.


In 1980, after four years of negotiations with the State Government of Victoria, Heide founders John and Sunday Reed realised a long-held dream: they sold Heide II, their award winning modernist house and its titled property, to establish a museum of modern art. The sale included 112 paintings, drawings and sculptures from the Reeds’ personal art collection which, together with their bequest of 388 works, formed the museum’s foundation collection. Today the Heide Collection comprises some 3,600 works of art, building on the Reeds’ survey of Australian modernism from the 1930s to 1970s to reflect developments across the ensuing decades.