Jim Dine: A Life in Print

Jim Dine, Two Florida bathrobes, 1986Spanning 45 years of work, the National Gallery of Victoria presents Australia’s first exhibition devoted to the prints of acclaimed American artist Jim Dine in Jim Dine: A Life in Print at NGV International from 8 July 2017.

Featuring 100 prints selected from a landmark gift of 249 artworks donated by the the 82-year-old artist to the National Gallery of Victoria in 2016, the works presented were part of a global program of gifting, which also placed artworks in the collections of the British Museum and the Boston Fine Arts Museum.

Known for his highly original printmaking style and recognisable visual vocabulary, Dine emerged as an artist in 1960s New York alongside Roy Lichtenstein, Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg, and continues to work and exhibit internationally.

“The NGV is pleased to showcase for the first time the only significant collection of Jim Dine artworks in the southern hemisphere,” said Tony Ellwood, Director NGV. “Jim Dine: A Life in Print will offer a rare opportunity to explore the works of this innovative contemporary artist in depth, and across the decades.”

Dine’s expressive etchings, lithographs and woodcuts often depict subjects which he has returned to repeatedly since the 1960s, such as tools, bathrobes, hearts, skulls, Pinocchio and the Venus de Milo. These familiar objects and symbols are brought to life, often on a monumental scale, through Dine’s unconventional printmaking practice, which incorporates grinding the printing plate with power tools, creating texture and detail by manually distressing the paper, and hand-colouring individual prints so that no two works are exactly the same.

A unique figure in the 1960s New York art scene, Dine pushed boundaries in the print medium, whilst also practising as a painter, sculptor, photographer and poet. Although he has been associated with Pop Art, Dine is not aligned with any art movement, and his work is unlike Pop Art in its expressiveness, its unique hand-made quality and its autobiographical nature.

Key artworks in the exhibition include depictions of bathrobes such as Two Florida bathrobes (1986), and The Kindergarten robes (1983), both examples of Dine’s serial variation of a single motif which he returned to over a 30-year period. Love and grief (1992) showcases Dine’s imaginative combination of image and text and his use of symbols imbued with personal meaning.

Jim Dine: A Life in Print
NGV International, 180 St. Kilda Road, Melbourne
Exhibition: 8 July – 15 October 2017
Free admission

For more information, visit: www.ngv.vic.gov.au for details.

Image: Jim Dine, Two Florida bathrobes, 1986. colour lithograph, etching and soft-ground etching 61.0 x 45.6 cm (plate) (each), 80.6 x 117.6 cm (image and sheet) National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne Gift of the artist, 2016 © Jim Dine