An image of The curve of the bridge

Grace Cossington Smith

(Australia 1892 – 20 Dec 1984)

The curve of the bridge

20th & 21st c Australian art
Further information

Throughout its construction, which was completed in 1932, the Sydney Harbour Bridge inspired many artists to redefine their visions of the city and the harbour by incorporating this new industrial structure. This painting shows the massive frame-work in mid-construction, emerging from the shores of North Sydney. It reveals Grace Cossington Smith’s view of the bridge as a dynamic work-in-progress.

In a powerful translation of forms through colour and light, the painting radiates optimism and energy in a celebration of modern engineering and, more broadly, the modern age. The artist made many pencil studies onsite, which she inscribed with notes on colour, took back to her studio and transformed into an iconic expression of Sydney’s most enduring urban monument.

Place of origin
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
oil on cardboard
110.5 x 82.5 cm board; 126.5 x 99.0 x 8.0 cm frame
Signature & date

Signed l.l. corner, black ink "G.Cossington Smith". Not dated.

Purchased with funds provided by the Art Gallery Society of New South Wales and James Fairfax AO 1991
Accession number
© Estate of Grace Cossington Smith