Lake Macquarie History

20th Century

This sub-collection focuses on a wide range of media and thematic approaches. Artists represented particularly include those working in the 1950-60s and 1980-90s.

Early acquired works by key Australian and Hunter-based artists were accessioned through the City of Lake Macquarie – Charlestown Square Art Prize (1986-1991), which charted the themes explored by artists during this dynamic period in Australian art.

The legacy was a strong beginning to a locally supported regional collection selected by esteemed judges who understood the contemporary art scene and the context for which the works were being acquired. Works include those by Lindy Lee, Janet Laurence and Ken Unsworth.

Also forming part of the 20th Century sub-collection are two significant bequests from the late Shirley Firkin and Ruth Spenser Komon. The Ruth Spenser Komon Bequest comprises seven works by Sir William Dobell, including a late self-portrait. Dobell was a well-known Lake Macquarie resident until his death in 1970. The Shirley Firkin Bequest features work by artists including:

Doug Archibald
Charles Blackman
Arthur Boyd
Judy Cassab
John Coburn
Robert Dickerson
William Dobell
James Gleeson
Tom Gleghorn
Frank Hinder
Norman Lindsay
Margaret Olley
Joshua Smith
Brett Whiteley

Acknowledgement of Country

We remember and respect the Ancestors who cared for and nurtured this Country. It is in their footsteps that we travel these lands and waters. Lake Macquarie City Council acknowledges the Awabakal people and Elders past, present and future.

Council acknowledges traditional custodians throughout Australia. We commit to listening deeply to and collaborating with First Peoples in our work.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this website and Council's cultural collections may contain images, voices or names of deceased persons in photographs, film, audio recordings or printed material.

This website may contain place names, opinions and terms that reflect authors' views or those of the period in which the item was written or recorded. These may not be considered appropriate today.

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