Menzies Art Brands


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George Baldessins surrealist sculpture and printmaking quickly saw him rise to prominence within the Melbourne art scene in the 1970s, until his untimely death in a car accident at just 39 years of age.

Baldessins most prominent motif was his pears, which were employed as a symbol of sensual desire. We see them represented in printed form (such as Lot 74), as sculpture (including the now iconic sculptural installation Pear Version Number 2 1973, held by the National Gallery of Australia), and as a hybrid of printmaking and sculpture, as in the present work. Here, Baldessins pear etchings are suspended in resin, giving the effect of the fruits recurring indefinitely. In creating this work, Baldessin was undoubtedly inspired by the resin sculptures of Californian Light and Space artist Peter Alexander, particularly Cloud Box 1966.

Baldessin considered printmaking and sculpture two complementary art forms. He once asserted: What better place to work out sculpture than on metal plates? Drawing on metal is more like the end result of sculpture than using a paper and pen.1

1. McGrath, S., Baldessin: A Genuine Renaissance Man, The Weekend Australian Magazine, 19-20 August 1978

Asta Cameron

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