IMANTS TILLERS

IMANTS TILLERS

b. 1950, Australia

Lives and works Cooma, New South Wales.

Imants Tillers since the late 70’s has critiqued not only the art of the late 20th century Australian art but also international centres of the Western world. No discussion on postmodernism or appropriation can take place in Australia without reference to this significant artist.

Imants Tillers is the child of Latvian refugees who arrived in Australia in 1949, exiled from their homeland by war and political turmoil, part of the great post-war European diaspora. It is this experience of being displaced to a new land, isolated from cultural and personal histories, which has become a central component of Tillers’ work.

While he was born in Australia, in 1950, his first language was Latvian and therefore the questions he asks in his work are informed by the diasporic experience and longing—about place, relationships to the past and the self, of locality and identity. Together, the more than 100,000 canvasboards in Tillers’ paintings form a long poem with many verses. They are informed, as Tillers said of Colin McCahon, by “a constant tension between the search for meaning, the desire for transcendence and a pervasive, immovable scepticism.”

His landscapes are made up of fragments of borrowed images and of language—marks, words, phrases and names used to create the country, to give it form and place oneself within it. Using simple means—hundreds of small canvasboards combined into huge gridded paintings—they exist as part of a long, continuing series, or like a poem in many, fragmented verses.

Tillers’ works map a space of influence, combining, quoting and knitting together words, images and ideas, ghosts and other associations, with source material contributing fragments to his continuing, multi-part epic. The connections he draws together are at once his own and connections to a wider dialogue.

https://www.imantstillers.com

THE PHILOSOPHY OF DOUBT
2017
Imants Tillers: Water Dreaming, 2014, synthetic polymer paint and gouache on 49 canvasboards, No. 94982 - 95030, 178 x 248 cm
THE PHILOSOPHERS WALK
2014
Imants Tillers: Melancholy Landscape VII, 2011, synthetic polymer paint and gouache on 72 canvasboards, 228.5 x 284.5 cm
NATURE SPEAKS
2011
Imants Tillers: Leap of Faith (detail), 1993/2009, oilstick, gouache and synthetic polymer paint on 120 canvas boards, 304.8 x 381cm, , with 6 painted bronze sculptures, 28 x 30 x 25cm each, cast from 864 canvas boards
LEAP OF FAITH
2009
Imants Tillers: Shadow of the Hereafter, 2007, acrylic and gouache on 72 canvas boards, 228.5 x 284.5 cm
IN TWO MINDS
2007
Imants Tillers: Outback, synthetic polymer & gouache on 54 panels, 228 x 213 cm
2004

2018

Journey to Nowhere, Latvian National Museum of Art, Riga. Curated by Elita Ansone

2017

Meeting Place: Imants Tillers and Michael Nelson Jagamarra, Parliament House, Canberra. Curated by Justine Van Mourik

2015

Pop to popism, Art Gallery of New South Wales. Curated by Wayne Tunnicliffe
Julian Dashper & Friends, City Gallery Wellington. Curated by Robert Leonard

2014

The Philosopher's Walk, Greenaway Art Gallery, Adelaide

2013

The Fleeting Self, Arc One Gallery, Melbourne

2012

Capricornia, Jan Manton Art, Brisbane
Tabula Rasa, Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney

2011

Nature Speaks, Greenaway Art Gallery, Adelaide

2010

A Poem of the Land, Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney 
The Blossoming World, Arc One Gallery, Melbourne

2009

Leap of Faith, Greenaway Art Gallery, Adelaide
Imants Tillers: The long poem, Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery, The University of WA, Perth
'Value Added' Landscapes, Jan Manton Art, Brisbane

2008

The Tears of Things, Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney
Melancholy Landscape, Arc One Gallery, Melbourne

2007

In Two Minds, Greenaway Art Gallery, Adelaide 

2006

one world / many visions, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra

2005

Land Beyond Goodbye, Sherman Galleries, Sydney

2004

Local Knowledge, Raglan Gallery and Cultural Centre, Cooma, NSW 
Transmissions: From here and there, Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne 
Imants Tillers, Greenaway Art Gallery, Adelaide

2003

Imants Tillers: Recent Works, Sherman Galleries, Sydney 
Imants Tillers, Australian Art Resources, Melbourne

2002

ARCO, Madrid (Greenaway Art Gallery) 
Not yet post-Aboriginal, Hazelhurst Regional Gallery, Sydney 
Greenaway Art Gallery, Adelaide 
Chapman Gallery, Canberra 
Melbourne Art Fair (Span Galleries)

2000

Imants Tillers, Sherman Galleries Hargrave, Sydney 
Imants Tillers, Greenaway Art Gallery, Adelaide

1999-00

Towards Infinity: Works by Imants Tillers, MARCO Museo de Arte Contemporáneo Monterrey, Mexico

1999

Not yet post-Aboriginal, Span Galleries, Melbourne 
Nature Speaks, Sherman Galleries Goodhope, Sydney 
Home Visitation, Chapman Gallery, Canberra20

    
 

SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS

2013

Australia, Royal Academy of Arts, London
Archibald Prize Exhibition, Art Gallery of New South Wales
Wynne Prize Exhibition, Art Gallery of New South Wales

2012

New Work, Greenaway Art Gallery, Adelaide

2011

Group Show, Roslyn Oxley 9 Gallery, Sydney
Out of Australia: Prints + Drawings from Sidney Nolan to Rover Thomas, British Museum, London

2010

MCA Collection: New Acquisitions in Context, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney

2008

Michael Nelson Jagamara: from the studio, experimentations and collaborations, 1996-2008, Fireworks Gallery, Brisbane (collaborative work included)

2007

New Horizons: The Collection of the Ishibashi Foundation, Bridgestone Museum of Art, Tokyo
The John McCaughey Memorial Prize: 50 Years, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Poets Paint Words, Newcastle Region Art Gallery
Summer '07 '08, Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney
Prelude 2008, Arc One Gallery, Melbourne

2006

2006: The Year in Art, S.H. Erwin Gallery, National Trust Centre, Sydney 
Prism: Contemporary Australian Art, Bridgestone Museum of Art, Tokyo 
2006 Clemenger Contemporary Art Award, The Ian Potter Centre, NGV Australia, Melbourne 
nEUclear reactions, Centro de Arte Caja de Burgos (CAB), Spain
Poor Yorick, Virginia Wilson Art, Sydney 
15th Biennale of Sydney: Zones of Contact, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney

2005

Arts de la Table, ANU Drill Hall Gallery, Canberra 
A Partial View: Australian Art in he UWA Art Collection, Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery, Perth 
Shoosh! A History of the Campfire Group, Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane 
Unscripted: Language in Contemporary Australian Art, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney 
Pitch Your Own Tent: Art Projects / Store 5 / First Floor, Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne 
A Sense of Place, Tarrawarra Museum of Art, Yarra Valley, Melbourne

2004

One Of: Festivus 04, Sherman Galleries, Sydney ANU Art Collection: Acquisitions from the Last Ten Years, ANU Drill Hall Gallery, Canberra 
Sharjah Project: Artcard, Sharjah Art Museum, United Arab Emirates 
Shanghai Art Fair, Australian Art Resources, Melbourne 
The Joseph Brown Collection, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne 
Imants Tillers, John Nixon and Louise Forthun, Conny Dietzschold Gallery, Sydney 
Landscape in Me: Windows on Australian Art, Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory, Darwin

2003

MCA Unpacked II, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney 
First Beijing International Art Biennale, Beijing, China (Prize for Excellence) 
Intergrafia: World Award Winners Gallery, International Print Triennale, Krakow, Poland 
Empathy: Beyond the Horizon, Artspace, Sydney 
Austral–Asia Zero Three, Sherman Galleries, Sydney 
Synergies: A Fusion Event, Australian National University, Drill Hall Gallery, Canberra 
Fieldwork, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne 
Bushfire, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne

2002

Kunst Nach Kunst (Art After Art), Neues Museum Weserburg, Bremen, Germany
The Big River Show, Wagga Wagga Regional Art Gallery, NSW 
Lines II, Fire-Works Gallery, Brisbane 
Deeper Places, Casula Powerhouse, Sydney 
Mindscapes, Newcastle Region Art Gallery, NSW

 

COLLECTIONS

Art Gallery of NSW; Art Gallery of SA; Art Gallery of WA; Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tãmaki, New Zealand; Australian Embassy, Paris; Ballarat Fine Art Gallery, Vic; Bell Resources Collection, New York; Bendigo Art Gallery, Vic; Bridgestone Museum of Art, Tokyo; The Chartwell Collection, New Zealand; Chase Manhattan Bank Collection, New York; Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu, New Zealand; Floridablanca Collection, Madrid; Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne; High Court of Australia Collection, Canberra; Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki; Lila and Gilbert Silverman Collection, Detroit; The Loti and Victor Smorgon Collection; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Michael Darling Collection, Sydney; Monash University Collection, Melbourne; Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Monterrey (MARCO), Mexico; Museum and Art Gallery of the NT, Darwin; Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney; Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa; National Gallery of Australia; National Gallery of Victoria; National Museum of Art, Latvia; Newcastle Region Art Gallery, NSW; Orange Regional Gallery, NSW; Parliament House Art Collection, Canberra; Pori Art Museum, Finland; Prudential Insurance Company Collection, New York; Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, Launceston; Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane; Sakai City Collection, Japan; Sussan Corporation Collection, Melbourne; TarraWarra Museum of Art, Vic; Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery; University of Technology Art Collection, Sydney; University of WA Art Collection, Perth; Wagga Wagga Regional Art Gallery, NSW; Wesfarmers Collection, Perth; Westpac Bank Collection, New York; Westpac Corporate Art Collection, Sydney; Wollongong City Gallery, NSW; British Museum, London

 

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