Rick Amor

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Rick Amor
Born Richard William Amor
(1948-03-03)3 March 1948
Frankston, Australia
Nationality Australian
Education National Gallery School, Melbourne
Known for Painting, drawing, sculpture, printmaker
Awards McClelland Sculpture Award 2007
Old Seas
Artist Rick Amor
Year 2004 (2004)
Medium Oil on canvas
Dimensions 81 cm × 100 cm (32 in × 39 in)

Rick Amor (born 3 March 1948) is an Australian artist and figurative painter. He was an Official War Artist.

Life and work[edit]

Rick Amor was born in Frankston, Victoria, Australia. He has a certificate in art from the Caulfield Institute of Technology, and Associate Diploma in Painting from the National Gallery School, Melbourne.[1]

He began exhibiting at the Joseph Brown gallery in 1974. He has entered the Archibald Prize at least 11 times and been exhibited nine times. He has been the recipient of several Australia Council studio residencies, allowing him to work in London, New York and Barcelona. In 1999 he was one of the first Australian artists to be appointed as the Official War Artist to East Timor by the Australian War Memorial, and the first since the end of the Vietnam War.

Amor has held over 64 solo exhibitions since first exhibiting at Joseph Brown Gallery in 1974 and has shown annually at Niagara Galleries since 1983. In 2013 a 30th Anniversary exhibition was held at Niagara Galleries. A major survey exhibition of his paintings was curated by McClelland Gallery in 1990 and toured various regional galleries in Victoria and South Australia throughout 1990 and 1991. An exhibition of his prints toured various regional galleries in Victoria and Tasmania 1993-4.[2] In 1993 another exhibition mounted by Bendigo Art Gallery toured Australia.

He was interviewed in the 2005 Peter Berner documentary about the Archibald Prize called Loaded Brush.

Amor's most recent exhibitions include Rick Amor: From Study to Painting at Castlemaine Art Gallery and Historical Museum, Victoria and his 30th Anniversary Exhibition at Niagara Galleries in 2013 and an exhibition at the Australian Print Workshop in 2012. He was also involved in group shows Blue Chip XV: The Collectors' Exhibition at Niagara Galleries and the Small Sculpture Fair at McClelland Sculpture Park and Gallery in 2013.

Major texts on Amor's work have been published in the last fifteen years, including Gary Catalano’s biography, The Solitary Watcher: Rick Amor and his Art, published by The Miegunyah Press in 2001,and Gavin Fry’s richly illustrated monograph, Rick Amor, published by The Beagle Press in 2008.

The Winter
Artist Rick Amor
Year 1997 (1997)
Medium Oil on canvas


His work borrows heavily from the pictorial inheritance of Symbolism and Surrealism. There is always a poetic mystery and sense of menace, even in apparently journalistic work, such as the East Timor paintings. His major themes are the solitary watcher, figures at twilight, the vast emptiness of urban spaces and quiet mysterious interiors. His works resonate with powerful symbolism, and his landscapes in particular are full of disquieting atmosphere, with objects bathed in half light and shadows.

Sebastian Smee, a reviewer of Amor's 2008 retrospective exhibition at Heide Museum of Modern Art, concluded that he was


Since the early 1990s, he has also incorporated sculpture in his repertoire, generally bronze figures which he moulds at home, then has cast in foundry using the lost wax method. The National Gallery, Canberra, has purchased a two-metre-high bronze sculpture of a dog – "a made-up dog, a survivor".[4]

(In its previous location, it is now located in the Sculpture Garden)
Rick Amor The Dog at Australian National Gallery.JPG
The Dog
Artist Rick Amor
Year 2004 (2004)
Medium Bronze
Subject A dog
Dimensions 100.0 cm × 90 cm × 170 cm (39.4 in × 35 in × 67 in)
Location Australian National Gallery, Canberra
Website http://cs.nga.gov.au/Detail.cfm?IRN=130946

In November 2007 Rick Amor won the prestigious $100,000 McClelland Sculpture Award for his haunting work Relic.

Rick Amor 'The Relic' at the McClelland Gallery.tiff
Artist Rick Amor
Year 2006 (2006)
Type Bronze, cor-ten steel
Dimensions 204. cm × 62 cm × 72 cm (80 in × 24 in × 28 in)
Location McClelland Gallery and Sculpture Park, Langwarrin, VIC

artsACT has commissioned a version of Relic for Canberra located near the intersection of Childers Street and University Avenue.[1]. images


Rick Amor is represented in the permanent collections of the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, the National Portrait Gallery, the Ballarat Fine Art Gallery and numerous state, regional and university collections throughout Australia.


  • 2007 The McClelland Award, McClelland Gallery+Sculpture Park, Victoria
  • 2000 Awarded the Visual Arts/Craft Board London Studio, England
  • 1995 Awarded the Visual Arts/Craft Board Green Street Studio, New York
  • 1991 Awarded the Visual Arts/Craft Board Barcelona Studio, Spain
  • 1989 National Australia Bank Art Prize
  • 1987 Castlemaine Drawing Prize (Second Prize)
  • 1980 Artist in Residence, Victorian Trades Hall Council
  • 1975 Visual Arts Board Grant
  • 1968 National Gallery Traveling Scholarship
  • 1967 National Gallery Drawing Prize (shared)
  • Hugh Ramsey Portrait Prize


  1. ^ Kerr, Joan. "Bibliography". Design and Art Australia Online. Retrieved 24 February 2013. 
  2. ^ Gary Catalano (1993) Rick Amor and the Graphic Arts, Niagara Galleries Melbourne, and NETS Victoria. Catalogue for the touring exhibition.
  3. ^ Sebastian Smee, Touching the void, A Review of A Single Mind: Rick Amor Heide Museum of Modern Art in The Australian 12/4/2008
  4. ^ In search of beauty – Arts – www.theage.com.au
  5. ^ Sculptor's win revives faith in the human spirit – Entertainment – theage.com.au

External links[edit]