An image of The spirit of the sea

Barbara Tribe

(Australia, England 20 Jun 1913 – 21 Oct 2000)

The spirit of the sea

Location
Not on display
Further information

In 'The spirit of the sea' 1933 Barbara Tribe has endowed a mythological subject with a modern sensibility. The marine theme was influenced by her upbringing in Sydney's eastern suburbs and was in tune with the classicised reimagining of beach life by Australian artists during the 1930s. Tribe has modelled a mermaid being devoured by a sea creature in 'The spirit of the sea'. Its overt eroticism, represented by the sexual symbolism of the serpent and its contortion of the female figure, is indicative of the vitalist traditions taught by Rayner Hoff with whom Tribe was a student of at East Sydney Technical College.' The spirit of the sea’ was first exhibited in the Society of Artists, Sydney, in 1934, where it and was reviewed favourably in the Sydney Mail.

Year
1933
Media
Sculpture
Medium
plaster, wood
Dimensions
39.5 x 41.5 x 23.5 cm
Signature & date

Signed l.l. verso, incised "Barbara Tribe.". Not dated.

Credit
Bequest of Barbara Tribe 2015
Accession number
221.2015
Copyright
© Barbara Tribe Foundation