26 May – 11 June 2022
about the exhibition
Nicola Dickson is a Canberra-based artist whose practice combines exploration of the natural world and rumination on colonial history. Her visual and spiritual experience of place is nurtured by meditative walking journeys through natural country. During a recent artist’s residency in Mildura on the Murray River, she was captivated by the flora and fauna of the area, the abundant birdlife and the transition of vegetation from low desert mallee to verdant tangled strips of black box eucalyptus and river red gums along the waterway. As she walked, re-tracing the journey of the 19th century explorer William Blandowski, she reflected on the layered history of the region. Nicola says “the way that walking directed my experience of the Murray is mirrored in my paintings. The main subjects of the paintings are those facets of the natural environment especially noteworthy to me – local birds, animals, distinctive plants and historical markers.”
Nicola Dickson graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from the School of Art at the Australian National University in 2003 and completed her doctorate in 2010. Since graduating, she has exhibited widely. In 2013 she was a finalist in the Sulman Prize, and in 2013 and 2014 she was Highly Commended in the Waterhouse Natural Science Art Prize. Her work was included in the National Portrait Gallery exhibition ‘So Fine: Contemporary women artists make Australian history’ in 2018 and is represented in the collections of the Canberra Museum & Gallery and Parliament House. Nicola Dickson has undertaken several art residencies, including in Rhode Island in 2019 and Mildura in 2021.