Allens

Robert Ambrose Cole

Untitled 1992 by Robert Cole
Untitled 1992
acrylic on stonehenge paper
56 x 76cm unframed

Click on a thumbnail to view a larger version


Brief biography

Born to parents of Aboriginal heritage, and raised in Alice Springs, Robert Ambrose Cole was educated in the Western system but, as he later described it, was 'surrounded by the great desert art movement'. Self-taught, he started painting in 1988 while employed by the Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association, during which time he was influenced by the art movement at Utopia. Until his death in 1994, he continued to experiment with elemental colours and symbols characteristic of the art from Papunya, Utopia and Hermannsburg. He held two solo exhibitions in Sydney in 1991 and 1993, and his work appeared in national group exhibitions including Perspecta (Art Gallery of New South Wales, 1993), Spirit and Place (Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, 1996) and the 1998 Adelaide Biennial, All this and heaven too (Art Gallery of South Australia, 1998).

About the works

Cole's optical illusory style took dot painting into a different dimension. His work was characterised by closely applied white dots, through which abstracted forms of landscape and spirit figures emerge from the underlying darker colour.

Works in the Allens collection

Untitled 1992
acrylic on stonehenge paper
56 x 76cm unframed

Untitled 1992
acrylic on paper on canvas
78 x 58cm unframed

Untitled 1993
acrylic on paper on canvas
77 x 57cm unframed

Spirit figure 1993
acrylic on paper on canvas
100 x 70cm unframed