Urn of Flowers with Geese

Alison Baily Rehfisch

Urn of Flowers with Geese by Alison Baily Rehfisch


Alison Baily Rehfisch
Urn of Flowers with Geese
oil on board
53 x 36 cm

Copyright the Estate of the Artist.

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Fine Australian Paintings and Books, Sothebys, Sydney, November 1993, lot 491 as Urn of Flowers with Birds in Flight

Australian & International Paintings, Studio Ceramics, Glass and Sculpture, Lawsons, Sydney, July 2001, lot 155

private collection, Melbourne

Further Information

Alison Rehfisch was encouraged by her artistic parents to pursue her interest in painting, studying at the Julian Ashton School of Art in Sydney. She returned to studies after marriage and the birth of her daughter, attending Antonio Dattilo Rubbo’s classes at the Royal Art Society of New South Wales, winning the Prize for Still Life in 1929.

At this time, Rehfisch met fellow artist George Duncan, and worked with Dorrit Black, Rah Fizelle, Adelaide Perry and Thea Proctor before moving for a time to Europe with Duncan where she continued her studies at the Grosvenor Art School (1933-39) and exhibited at The Royal Oil Painters Institute; the Society of Women Artists; the British Empire Society and the Societe Nationale des Beaux-Arts.

Rehfisch was a member of the Contemporary Group and the Contemporary Art Society of Australia and included in the exhibition of Australian Women Painters in Sydney, 1945. She held several joint exhibitions with Duncan, as well as solo exhibitions at the Macquarie Gallery. Many of Rehfisch’s paintings were lost in a studio fire in 1947. She is particularly known for her still life and landscape paintings in a modernist style with strong use of colour. This painting draws our eye to the riotous bunch of colourful flowers in red, pink and purple hues with yellow highlights to complement the background with its use of yellow touched with pink towards the lower edge of the work and a contrasting blue towards the higher end, where a flock of geese hang suspended in the air, just beyond the reaching flowers. The elongated composition is emphasised by the theatrical side framing device and the dark decorative vase not only provides a contrast but helps to anchor the work, a juxtaposition with the lift of flight above.

Represented:Art Gallery of New South Wales; National Portrait Gallery; The University of Sydney

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