Caroline CASEY, Elliptical folding screen Enlarge 1 /2
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Caroline CASEY

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia born 1964

Elliptical folding screen 1996 Place made: New South Wales, Australia
Materials & Technique: furniture, screens, wood, American rock maple or sugar maple (acer saccharum)

Dimensions: 200.0 h x 160.0 w x 3.0 d cm
Acknowledgement: Purchased 1996
Accession No: NGA 96.1010

Caroline Casey’s training in interior, fashion and textile design at Sydney College of the Arts and the Parsons School of Design in New York has given her a broad background against which to develop her work in furniture and smaller domestic objects.

Designed for limited production, her furniture is precise in its use of simple materials, repetitive forms and clearly expressed structure. The relationships between these elements of her work are subtle, allowing the eye to explore the surface and texture of natural materials, such as wood, against the particular visual and tactile qualities of manufactured materials, such as plastic and steel.

This five-panel folding screen illustrates Casey’s use of a simple repetitive element—elongated ovals of plywood—suggesting large overlapping plant leaves and the airiness of the traditional slatted screenwork used in much tropical architecture. The screen’s simple beauty, organic design elements and use of a single, unadorned material also reveals the influence on Casey of mid-twentieth-century Scandinavian designers, such as the Finnish architect Alvar Aalto. This screen is part of the National Gallery of Australia’s extensive collection of contemporary Australian craft and design.


Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra 2010
From: Ron Radford (ed), Collection highlights: National Gallery of Australia, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, 2008

Caroline Casey’s training in interior, fashion and textile design at Sydney College of the Arts and Parsons School of Design in New York has given her a broad background against which to develop her work in furniture and smaller domestic objects.

Designed for limited production, her furniture is precise in its use of simple materials, repetitive forms and clearly expressed structure. The relationships between these elements of her work are subtle, allowing the eye to explore the surface and texture of natural materials, such as wood, against the visual and tactile qualities of manufactured materials, such as plastic and steel.

This five-panel folding screen illustrates Casey’s use of a simple repetitive element—elongated ovals of plywood—suggesting large overlapping leaves and the airiness of the traditional slatted screenwork that is used in much tropical architecture. The screen’s simple beauty, organic design elements and use of a single, unadorned material also reveal the influence on Casey of mid-twentieth century Scandinavian designers, such as the Finnish architect Alvar Aalto. This screen is part of the National Gallery of Australia’s extensive collection of contemporary Australian craft and design.


Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra 2014
From: Collection highlights: National Gallery of Australia, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, 2014

Caroline Casey’s training in interior, fashion and textile design has given her a broad background against which to develop her work in furniture and smaller domestic objects. Designed for limited production, her furniture displays a precise logic in its use of simple materials, repetitive forms and clearly-expressed structure. The relationships between these elements of her work are subtle, allowing the eye and the hand to explore the surface and texture not only of natural materials such as wood, but also of the particular qualities of manufactured materials such as plastic and steel.

This folding screen illustrates Casey’s use of a simple repetitive element – elongated ovals of wood – suggesting large overlapping plant leaves and the airiness of the traditional slatted screenwork used in traditional tropical architecture. The influence on Casey of the work of Scandinavian designers such as Alvar Aalto can be seen in its organic design elements and use of a single, unadorned material.

Robert Bell


Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra 2010
From: Anne Gray (ed), Australian art in the National Gallery of Australia, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, 2002