An image of Apocalyptic horse

Albert Tucker

(Australia 29 Dec 1914 – 23 Oct 1999)

Apocalyptic horse

20th & 21st c Australian art
Further information

Tucker's paintings created outside Australia during the 1950s and 1960s reveal an affinity with the Italian painter Alberto Burri, whom he had met in Rome in 1953–54. Intrigued by the textural quality inherent in polyvinyl acetate (used by Burri to create his evocative built-up surfaces), Tucker adopted the flexible and leathery toughness of this new material into his work.

During his time in Rome in 1954 Tucker also met his friend Sidney Nolan, who had brought with him photographs of the 1952 Queensland drought. Images of desiccated animal carcasses strewn across a parched terrain left an enduring impression on Tucker. 'Apocalyptic horse' was painted in reaction to these images, and is one of several works which display Tucker’s conversion from oils to fast-drying acrylic paint, evoking the shape and texture of the Australian outback.

oil on hardboard
62.0 x 81.0 cm board; 79.4 x 97.8 x 3.2 cm frame
Signature & date

Signed and dated l.l. corner, black oil "Tucker 1956".

Purchased 1982
Accession number
© The Estate of Barbara Tucker. Courtesy of Sotheby's Australia