We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of New South Wales stands.


The works in this space centre around a dialogue between Lloyd Rees’ The road to Berry 1947 and Toni Warburton’s Lookout: mound (seen from Merlin’s Lookout), Hill End 2004.

Warburton’s ceramic work is part of a series of hill-like forms suggesting magical landscapes, both real and imagined. She was influenced by the bulbous organic swelling of the hills in this masterful and iconic painting by Rees, which depicts the NSW South Coast, near Gerringong, where he holidayed and drew inspiration for many of his great works. Warburton’s work is both a tribute to Rees’ imagery and an amalgam of the landscapes of Hill End, NSW, another place rich with painting associations.

A bowl by Col Levy offers another response to the Australian landscape, both through its curving gentle shape – inherently physical and felt, shaped by arm and hand – and the colours and tones of its surface, created by the fiery extremes of the kiln. Nearby, a bowl by Merric Boyd – one of the founders of Australian studio pottery – incorporates the artist’s uniquely personal interpretation of Australian flora seen in the surface and form of the vessel, in particular, the thick tree shapes that form the handles.

Merric Boyd, in turn, is the subject of his son Arthur Boyd’s prints on display, which depict the physicality of ceramics. In a dreamlike reimagining, Merric is caught in the whirlwind act of making.