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Artist Helen Eager has been commissioned to paint a mural on the side wall of the stair court for the building extension of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney. This large public mural, 16 x 8 metres is located and designed to catch the attention of people from a great distance. This composition of repetitive triangular forms, seem to dance with rhythm inherent in the large staircase against which it is placed.
Helen commenced her studies in art in 1976 in Adelaide, furthering that with studies at COFA in Sydney and residencies and work overseas. Since 1976 she has had a strong and consistent career with solo and group exhibitions throughout Australia, Japan and the UK. Over the decades Eager’s work has been well recognized as it has been acquired by many corporate and institutional collections and State and Regional galleries.
So it is quite fitting that the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney have selected Eager’s brand of non-objective abstraction to grace the entrance portico of their new building. The painting’s clarity and scale belies the delicacy with which Eager works. All is softly and accurately hand crafted. The apparently simple forms are painted carefully in multiple thin layers which allows light to penetrate the coloured forms and resonate with reflections from the white subsurface. She has used a limited palette- selection of oranges and yellows to get the effect she wants.
This is an exciting time at the MCA where the finishing touches are being completed in readiness for its scheduled opening on 31st March. The mural will also be a feat of endurance as Eager paints it in situ on the concrete wall of the entrance stairwell over the last two weeks of February. We are so lucky to have been allowed a peek preview of this important work to celebrate Museum of Contemporary Art’s 2012 major extension.
Helen Eager is represented by Utopia Gallery in Sydney. I wish to thanks Utopia Gallery and Christopher Hodges for access to his article ‘Blame it on New York’, for research on Eager’s work. Eager has painted exclusively with Atelier Interactive and Ateleir Clear Painting Mediums which Chroma has donated.