Norman Lindsay

(Australia 23 Feb 1879 – 21 Nov 1969)

Bacchanal or The vintage festival

Other titles:
The vintage festival
Not on display
Further information

The eroticism of Lindsay's images defied the pervasive hypocrisy and wowserism of the time. Rubery Bennett, the artist's agent gave the following account of a bishop's response to Lindsay's subjects:

"A Bishop came in one day accompanied by a lesser dignitary of the church and asked could he see some of Norman's etchings - afterwards I thought he probably meant Lionel's. However, we had a big folio and we used to allow the lid to fall down and let the etchings fall flat on the lid. He saw about four or five and then he slammed the folio shut and in a most outraged and dignified manner told me that they were frightful, vulgar and obscene, in fact, that they reminded him of a lot of prostitutes. My reply was that I bowed to his superior knowledge as I had never seen a nude prostitute. When I told Norman he said 'Bloody Liar!'. "

pencil, pen and black ink on ivory wove paper
28.2 x 25.3 cm image; 32.6 x 28.4 cm sheet
Signature & date

Signed l.r., pen and black ink "NORMAN LINDSAY". Not dated.

Purchased 1943
Accession number