An image of Surf painting / blood disco

Scott Redford

(Australia 1962 – )

Surf painting / blood disco

Not on display
Further information

Scott Redford's layered body of work embodies a synthesis of regionalism, identity, abstraction and pop culture. He is one of Australia's finest 'post-conceptual' painters, as well as working with sculpture and photography.

Redford has exhibited widely in Australia and the very extensive literature on his practice, including two substantial monographic publications, is an indication of the appeal his work has had to writers, critics and other artists. In addition to a very sophisticated engagement with current theoretical concerns, his work is very accessible as he utilises a visual language derived equally from abstract painting and pop/media culture. He has been influential on a younger generation of artists, an influence which has at times has been overlooked, perhaps because of his resolute commitment to staying in Brisbane.

'Surf painting / blood disco' is a really great example of Redford's 'surf paintings', where he creates artworks from the same materials and processes used to make surfboards. Growing up on the Gold Coast and living in Brisbane, Redford has used the surfboard as a locating icon, a distinctively Australian and Queensland symbol of local culture and aspirations. While many of his 'surf paintings' have been figurative, with paintings of high rises and palm trees, this one brilliantly incorporates his interest in modernism, identity and sub-cultures.

The blue stripes on the red ground could be hard edge abstraction in revved up colours, a ducco version of Barnett Newman or Ellsworth Kelly, or equally they could be racing stripes from the souped-up hotrod decal in the corner. They recall the car paint used in Ian Burn's 'Blue Reflex', in the AGNSW collection. The car has flames across the body and bonnet and the words 'blood disco' a reference to HIV and AIDS. This work situates itself between these references as well as Redford's interest in modernist formalism as a visual language available in a regional version made "dense with desire, physicality and politics". (Schubert, 'Learn by Heart')

resin over acrylic on foamcore
240.0 x 120.0 cm
Contemporary Collection Benefactors 2002
Accession number
© Scott Redford. Licensed by Copyright Agency