Category Archives: Paintings By Year


Recent: “Big Water Views and Passion Gardens” Gallery One, Gold Coast

Next Exhibitions: 

 “Richard Dunlop: Honeyeaters and Sun Lovers” (Gallery One, Gold Coast September 2025)

“It’s a beautiful, quite tiny fragment that the artist has clearly been engrossed by, and he really succeeds in capturing the wonder that clearly held his attention. Dunlop has strong ideas and is bold about following his instincts into new territory.”Andrew Harper

“What turned me on to art at a young age? I was 12, at the Gap State High School in Brisbane. Every desk was separated in the room, individuals separated in a planned way for social control and expository-style teaching. Over a 45-minute lesson, I watched a renegade kid next to me from Mt Nebo (possibly on home-baked LSD) carve the entire lyric of David Bowie’s ‘Starman’ into his desk every time the teacher turned his back. The font he chose seemed to embody Bowie’s music. As a finished object, after 45 minutes, it was ravishing, and all done with a Bowie knife. It would make a curator weep from a glass eye.”RD 2024

“At the very base of Dante’s Inferno, a forensic topography of hell, is the category of people who insinuate your life friends, only for the covert purpose of betrayal. To Dante, those people caused the most hell on Earth.”  – Oxford Scholar


“Some are more sun-drenched than a Katz, or as airy as an early Clemente and would look at home on a wall in the Hamptons.” – Val Blondel

“Between stimulus and response, there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom” – Viktor Frankl

“Crimes with No Name is a small-scale Guernica.” – @CuriousJewReview

“Pics cool as fuck this year Richie. Tassie’s own JD Salinger. Irrepressible, dictionary definition.” – X Elon DM

“Barbaric HAMAS is no respecter of rules of war.” – Henry Ergas

“Stand with Israel as you did with Ukraine.” – Jacinta Nampijinpa Price


When the realization dawns that you’re likely doing just what the artist did when he made the work, a new appreciation of how well Dunlop shares his vision emerges. This is an artist who not only wants to share what he saw, but how he saw it”. – Andrew Harper

Richard’s paintings are always gorgeous to look at and they continue his quest for truth and beauty in a visual language that he has painstakingly developed. A language that is earthy and transcendental.” – Phil Brown

“Tuned into the world and environments around him, Richard Dunlop takes specific events, narratives and landscapes as a starting point and transforms them into paintings with continued resonance by pushing forms beyond the literal and into the elusive. The convalescing of specific references with Dunlop’s overarching perspective of their inextricable relationship to wider systems is seen in specific works such as Crossings (2021)
– which was painted during the invasion of Ukraine and refers to contemporary events all the while showing the historical influence of artists such as Grant Wood and Colin McCahon. Another work, In Search of Thylacine in the Great Western Tiers, takes the canonised and mythologised rapid extinction of the Tasmanian Tiger as the starting point to grapple with the colonial mindset in tandem with explorations of the Tasmanian landscape, where the artist lives. With art movements such as the Sublime and Picturesque – at the front of his mind, the artist lets in the layers of any given moment, Short Walks in North Tasmania is both a representation of the contemporary and the enduring.”
– Sophie Prince

“There’s a lot of beauty, but Dunlop also finds poetry – he balances the warm breath of a cow, observed as a steaming plume, with a night sky cascading with stars. It’s a beautiful, quite tiny fragment that the artist has clearly been engrossed by, and he really succeeds in capturing the wonder that clearly held his attention. Dunlop has strong ideas and is bold about following his instincts into new territory.” – Andrew Harper

“Art that can woo…Dunlop has more than earned his reputation.” – Rebecca Agnew

“When I get focus on Dunlop’s pictures online, they either pin me to my seat or take my breath away. One made me shake a little.”@CuriousJewReview


“Only when one is standing at exactly the right angle can you see and comprehend a new thing fully and for the first time.”Lao-Tzu 6th Century BC

“I have to record the glimpse seen at the highest point of affection – points of optical ecstasy, where romanticism and optimism overshadow any form of menace of foreboding. I have to paint pictures that have an effortless naturalness, not artificial or synthetic, not manufactured. I have to paint pictures that have no affectation through mental tricks, but are graceful and according to nature… Every part should be poetic and responsible for its own existence. It should be easy to take. I try to change the meaning of the thing painted into a new image – an elevated feeling.” – Brett Whiteley re ‘Lavender Bay’ paintings

While most of the risks Dunlop takes are well considered, some are quite the opposite. He describes painting as “an arena almost like a boxing ring…I don’t do preparatory drawings [and] the final paintings carry some signs of decisions made en route, erasures and changes of mind, remnants of under-painting all add to the ‘archaeology’ of a ‘picture’, an artificial thing like a novel or film.” The process, like his subject matter, is quite organic. Dunlop takes further risks by introducing random acts of violence to each work, and then attempts to resolve them, as would “occur in any natural settings.” Though, fittingly, he allows “earlier layers to persist…to give a sense of memories and the passage of time, just out of reach.” – Eric Nash, Curator

Your pictures give me energy in the morning.” – Adam Hudson, serial entrepreneur and philanthropist


“Virtuosic sense of place, of Tasmania… honestly, I don’t get how you do that.” – Stephen Lees

“The portrait of me by Richard Dunlop, Tim Olsen: The Man in Black, hung in the 2008 Archibald, was my Dorian Gray moment. Once a handsome young man, by then the sins, weaknesses and the decadence of my life were written all over my face, exposed in the most visited exhibition in Australia, for the whole world to see. It is the darkest, most lugubrious version of a beaten-up art dealer who has been poisoned by celebration. Expressing my amazement that it was hung at all to Edmund Capon, he replied: ‘It does have a certain likeness. He’s really captured you.’” Tim Olsen, Art Dealer, Sydney and New York, 2020

“Dunlop’s work here is very much about fragments [of North Tasmania] that seize his attention and there’s a lot of movement captured in them – birds drift across a distant estuary, a waterfall gushes and sprays. Parallel to this, Dunlop also captures some beautiful panoramic visions that literally stretch themselves out, long and thin. He’s not averse to working within the physical shape of a painting either – some works are impressively massive and feel as though they are dripping over the edges, while others are elegant wisps of colour that stretch into the distance. These long works are particularly engrossing – you literally have to turn your head to take them in – and when the realisation dawns that you’re likely doing just what the artist did when he made the work, a new appreciation of how well Dunlop shares his vision emerges.”Andrew Harper 2020

“Every time I go to create a new painting following a new train of thought, I realise that you have already explored it in images at least a decade beforehand.” – Anonymity preferred, correspondence from prominent Sydney artist

“It reminds us of some of the infinitely complex and subtle things that go into the art of painting… In fact, a painter looks at the world but no more copies it than a novelist or a filmmaker does. Even when a particular site is the subject of a landscape, or a set of objects on a table the basis of a still life, the painter has to translate elusive and changeable visual data., and even more importantly the intangible presence latent in what is seen, into objects of an entirely different order, composed of layers of pigments that must be brought into harmonious relations with each other; and these painted artificial forms must be subordinated to the abstract geometry of the picture plane and the frame.” – Sound advice from Christopher Allen, Art Commentator

“When I noticed that there were actually very few landscape paintings made about Queensland or North Tasmania, two places I dearly love, I decided some time ago to fill the void.” – RD 2020

“A compelling painter of light, the movement and moments of weather and terrain.” – Trudi Curtis, Art Dealer


“[Dunlop] is emphatic in the fact that his sole goal is to put something beautiful in the world; something that was not there before.”Frances Vinall, 2019

“Dunlop’s imagery has an unusual feeling. He is not simply painting a landscape, but cracking it open, his eye swimming in to find the specific components, and how they are constructed. There is a sense that Dunlop is pulling things apart with his work, fragmenting and reforming to understand what it is that he sees.”Andrew Harper, 2019

“We do not find many cases of artists trying to rebuild a language for representing the world, in particular through the primary media of drawing and painting.” – Christopher Allen 2019

“Each painting asks its own set of questions.” – Cecily Brown 2019

“The Great Western Tiers (including Cradle Mountain and the Highlands Lakes District) is a wilderness area of Tasmania, adjacent to Deloraine where Richard Dunlop now lives. It is mostly world heritage listed, as it should be, being some of most pristine territory remaining on earth, and hard-fought to keep that state. There, Dunlop experiments with perspective, often conjuring a ‘floating’ interior which allows the picture plane, like language to open into ambiguous space, and allows the viewer to vicariously enter the work.” – Tattersalls Prize 2019

“Tasmania seemed to miss out on the attention of our best modernist landscape artists, who were busy painting the interior. The reef has been largely untouched as a subject for landscape.” – RD 2019

“The act of painting, if done authentically, is not unlike fly fishing for trout.” – Quoted in Glover Prize catalogue re Fly Fisher, Meander River, near Deloraine Collection Craig Eberhardt KC


“Much of Dunlop’s work is an inquiry into the human need for order and control, and escaping into his fictive worlds – which only seek to assume a sense of reality, and in doing so, transcend it – they can act as a circuit breaker for the viewer so that they may instead see the interconnectedness of things; not only of art traditions to each other, but also of person to place, culture to nature, the finite to the infinite, and memory to experience.” – Eric Nash, 2018

“Like Fairweather, Dunlop is attracted to Eastern philosophy, particularly the Taoist vision of the intertwined relationship between nature and man, heaven and earth. For me, Dunlop’s work is spiritual although he’s a practical fellow who expresses no spiritual aspiration in conversation. He allows the viewer to add layers of meaning and I cannot help but regard his work as inherently spiritual. That spirituality is encapsulated in his vision of the life force that flows through everything. Dylan Thomas wrote about that in his poem The Force that Through the Green Fuse Drives the Flower. That force, wrote Thomas, “drives my green age”. I cannot look at the complex botanical works of Dunlop without thinking of those lines and that “green age”.” – Phil Brown, 2018

“All a poet can do is warn. Art is an exceedingly slow but very effective long-term means of communication across a century or more.”Wilfred Owen, 1918

“One cannot help but think of Dunlop as an artist with a keen eye for detail and composition, but rather than create work slavishly to these watchwords, he chooses invocation.” – Dr Jonathon McBurnie, Director Perc Tucker Regional Gallery 2018

“A highly original voice in Australian art destined to be blue-chip.”Steve Cohen, art collector, USA, 2018

“One of our finest contemporary poets, pictures a bonus.” – Les Murray 

“Fluidity, somewhat counter-intuitively, is best described as the rolling of discrete particles over one another, commensurate with external pressure. A Northern Survey by Richard Dunlop is so formed, a tumbling of concerns of, and the congealed wisdom of the history of painters who have gone before, attempting to express the same thing. Dunlop interprets the tangle of mangrove roots, the gloom of silty undercurrents and the briny, languorous oaths of inlet fish in thin layers of oil that vary in transparency and explicitness of brushwork. “Oil paint is characteristically liquid” says Dunlop.”Sheridan Hart

“Richard’s website and career have been very influential among the students for some years now.” – Steven Alderton, Director, National Art School, Sydney


“When you paint something it becomes a fact.” – Peter Doig

“Some entirely different weather pattern of climate change altogether has appeared in North Queensland, which has copped more than a battering lately. At the moment, it’s being called Cyclone Debbie.” – ABC News, 2017

When people ask me how does it feel to be always near the eye of the storm, I think to myself that they don’t get it, because you to any fair person they would acknowledge that I am the Storm.” – Donald Trump, climate change denier, elected President of the Free World January 2017

“When you devote the time to dive deep into Richard’s world, you won’t regret it.” – John McDonald


The Perfumed Garden is a lush and almost mystical work that has layers of paint and layers of meaning. His paintings are not literal. They are composites constructed through memory and are imbued with love.” – Phil Brown

“If there is a thread that unites Dunlop’s work regardless of subject, it is the awareness he brings of things that lie outside the realm of tangible matter, such as energy and spirit. This is reflected in the multi-dimensional quality to his work that is both aesthetic and conceptual. Dunlop is often credited with is hybridisation of established genres such as still life, landscape and botanical art, as he borrows conventions freely from each and merges them into a new painterly paradigm within the edges of the canvas. The merging of recognisable imagery from these genres with ambiguous forms, areas of abstraction and multiple perspectives is analogous to the impression of an experience, and the many ways it is absorbed through the mind and body.” – Marguerite Brown, Curator MFA


“Powerfully, even poignantly themselves as these objects may be – utterly present as phenomena of the known world – they seem endowed at the same time with the status of emissaries from another more ‘real’ one, which we recognise but could not name. It is in this sense that they might be said to approach the sublime. But to put it in those terms we must intend by “sublime” what lies mysteriously beyond the limits, beyond the threshold of what we can grasp, of where we have actually been – though not where, in moments of delight and enlightenment, the awakened spirit may take us.” – David Malouf, Being There, 2015 (quoted with the kind permission of the author, 2015)

“His luminous botanical paintings juxtapose then meld the traditions of both East and West to present us with an overwhelming fecundity of nature’s beauty. This master of seduction plays at the intersection of conventions of poetry, landscape and still life to create a luminal space for the imagination. This allows the viewer to invest Dunlop’s works with his or her own interpretations of life, death and immortality.”  Dr Christine Dauber, University of Queensland, 2015

“Richard Dunlop has had a successful career as a contemporary artist for a sustained period of more than twenty years. In this time, he has been at the forefront of painting’s resurgence in popularity and appeal, and has never been shy of breaking with established art conventions, such as his blending of elements from botanical illustration with still life and landscape traditions.” – Eric Nash, Perc Tucker Gallery 2015

“It sometimes haunts younger artists when you tell them that in the 444 days that van Gogh spent in Arles before he committed suicide at 37, and where he cut off part of his ear, he did 200 paintings, 200 watercolours and wrote 200 letters in three languages… especially when you ask them what they’ve been doing in the last fifteen months.” – Elwynn Lynn, September 14 1985

“He is one of the few Australian painters whose work it is actually worth standing in front of for more than a few seconds, in order to decipher the processes that put it together, the artistic judgements and intuitions that are to be seen in the sudden decision to use a particular dab of colour or correct a stream of falling paint.” – Sound advice on how to look at a painting by Rex Butler, referring to Ian Fairweather

“Dunlop understands that completely lifting his thoughts on any overtly political or moralistic issues would undermine their power, inhibit the sheer joy of seeing how he can make paint dance, flow and achieve enviable luminosity. Herein lies the genius, as it is the joy of viewing the painting that enables escapism. It creates a prolonged engagement for the audience to view his paintings with the sensitivity and consideration with which they were crafted.” – Eric Nash Curator CCP

“Painting is not something that must be understood. If the picture is for you, it will produce an almost physical sensation, something of joy, of wonder – a tug to the gut. Don’t go trying to understand it. Don’t expect the painter to stand and deliver his innermost convictions in other than his work.” – Ian Fairweather

Much of the beauty of the art of painting…lies in the microstructure of the brush marks themselves, the evident thinking and feeling in the way the artist has negotiated forms, transitions and edges.” – Christopher Allen