# 13066

SHEAD, Garry (1942- )

Ern Malley : The Darkening Ecliptic

$2,750.00 AUD

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Darwin : Basil Hall Editions, 2003. Nine etchings, each 150 x 220 mm, hand-printed by Natasha Rowell. Edition of 50; housed in a purpose-built ceramic box (290 x 215 x 60 mm); the etchings join up in the fashion of a puzzle to complete Shead’s image, Petit Testament; each of the nine etchings is signed verso, with the exception of the etching which represents the lower right-hand corner of the full image, signed ‘Garry Shead ’03’ in pencil on the image; a card with the complete image, a short text by Sasha Grishin, and the edition number, accompanies the etchings.

Shead’s work is based on the infamous Australian Ern Malley hoax of 1943. Malley’s The Darkening Ecliptic was published in the 1944 Autumn issue of Angry Penguins. The poem has been praised for its literary and poetic qualities, even though Sydney poets James McAuley and Harold Stewart admitted that the work was cynically created by them to prove that the Melbourne literary scene could not distinguish between great poetry and something less serious. The Ern Malley hoax has provided strong subject matter in Archibald Prize winner Garry Shead’s paintings and drawings.