Olive BISHOP, Wash and war Enlarge 1 /1


Melbourne, Victoria, Australia born 1941

Wash and war 1977 Description: wall piece
Place made: Adelaide, South Australia, Australia
Materials & Technique: ceramics, earthenware, glazed earthenware low-fired

Primary Insc: inscribed verso in black felt-tipped pen 'BISHOP OJ/77'
Secondary Insc: inscribed verso in black felt-tipped pen Wash & War/General (underlined)
Dimensions: 46.9 h x 38.6 w x 9.1 d cm
Acknowledgement: Crafts Board Collection donated by the Australia Council 1982
Accession No: NGA 83.3241
Subject: Collection: The Crafts Board of Australia Council collection of Australian and International decorative and design arts, acquired 1982.

Australia’s involvement in the Vietnam War occurred at the same time as the revival of interest in studio crafts. Artists beginning to work in this field found its accessibility and popularity allowed them to work in unconventional ways, using satire, for instance, to address issues not associated with the crafts. Olive Bishop is among a number of Adelaide ceramic artists working in this way, influenced by feminism, Gay issues and American funk art. Her work debunks military pomposity, reducing uniforms and decorations to garish caricature.

Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra