An image of Art students

E Phillips Fox

(Australia, France 12 Mar 1865 – 08 Oct 1915)

Art students

19th c Australian art
Further information

'Art students' was set at the Melbourne Art School in Bourke Street, which E Phillips Fox co-founded with Tudor St George Tucker when Fox returned from Europe in 1892. It was considered a groundbreaking work for its unconventional vertical, cropped composition and its frank naturalism. The
informal poses and paint-splattered smocks of its female students and the messy realism of its littered floor were considered ‘unfeminine’ when the work was first exhibited in Melbourne in 1895.

'Art students' is a vivid demonstration of Fox’s compositional and colouristic skills. Its grand-scale informality also presents an alternative to the heroic ‘national’ and masculine subjects of Australian painting in the 1890s.

Place of origin
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
oil on canvas
182.9 x 114.3 cm stretcher; 219.0 x 148.0 x 16.0 cm frame; 181.0 x 110.0 cm sight edge
Signature & date
Signed and dated l.l. corner, black oil "E.Phillips Fox / 95".
Purchased 1943
Accession number
Art Set
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