Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Linda Jackson; at the NGV

above: at left; silk chiffon gown; at right, screen printed kimono jacket

I was idly sorting out my phone the other day, and came across some pictures I snapped at the Linda Jackson Bush Couture exhibition, held in the National Gallery of Victoria.  I visited the gallery last September, and viewed the exhibition then.  These pieces are designed and created by the Australian artist and designer Linda Jackson, most of the examples made in the 1970's-1980's.
I'm afraid I no longer have the notes I took on the day, that I scribbled on a scrap of paper while I was studying the pieces, I must have stupidly thrown it out.  But I can still show these pictures to readers who may not be familiar with Linda Jackson and her exuberant aesthetic.
Linda Jackson took her inspiration from nature, and interpreted the Australian landscape into art and fashion by variously exploring screen-printing, applique, quilting, embroidery, patchwork and hand-painted fabrics as well as innovative piecing and regular sewing methods.
I took these photos with my phone, so please excuse any less than stellar image quality.  I did not use a flash but relied on the lighting in the gallery.  And incidentally, I looked for but found no signs forbidding photography, it was an open and free exhibition, and a guard saw me with my phone out in an obviously photo-taking attitude and simply smiled cheerfully at me, so I assumed photos were allowed.  However if they were not, and I am transgressing some copyright then someone please let me know and I will remove them immediately.
However I hope not, since I think some of my readers may not have come across her before, and will be as enthralled as I at her marvellous attention to detail, her eye for fabulous colour and intricate artistic design, and the superb execution in bringing her fantastical visions to life...
You can read a short bio of Linda Jackson here, see a selection of her artworks and clothing here, and other better photographs and examples of her work here

below at left, appliqued jacket and trousers and at right, patchwork ensemble
below; organza and silk dupion gown
below: jacket and trousers hand-knitted in the intarsia method

below: silk dupion gumleaf costume.  I cannot recall if this was screen-printed or applique...
below at left; handpainted coat, trousers and headscarf, at right screen-printed dress and coat
below at left; printed silk dress and headscarf, the print was designed by Linda Jackson I think as part of a collection for Oroton: and at right, a Waratah inspired gown and veil
These three dresses at the left are quite a different aesthetic to her usual bold and vivid style, featuring softer muted colours and more conventional design lines.  I probably would not have picked them as Linda Jackson's if I hadn't seen them here with my own eyes!

below: Sturt desert pea inspired ensemble, applique

below: handpainted silk dupion gown and ?cape?
below: quilted satin gown with veil.  Other gowns in the background that I foolishly did not photograph better.
I hope you enjoyed this look at the works of a prominent Australian designer.


  1. Qué maravilla de modelos, me parece precioso tanto color!

  2. Wow! What colours! I love the way the Sydney Opera House sails are interpreted on the coat. And the three less bright pieces - the cream one shoulder top is beautiful and so elegant. Clothes for rainy days! :-)

  3. Those designs are awesome! I think I need some colours right now, my sewing machine has been fed on only greys and black lately. So inspiring! Thanks for sharing.

  4. Thanks for these Carolyn - I am always struck by the colours you use in your clothing and came to the conclusion it must be the sun and endless sky you have over there. I went to boarding school with Jinx Nolan, Sidney Nolan's daughter, so was introduced as it were to Australian art at an early age [in the 50's]. It has always stood out against European art with its more sombre colours. I am keeping my own fashionary and now realise how limited my palette really is! Maureen

  5. I agree with Merches the colours are so beautiful - great exhibition.

  6. I really like the more traditional dresses. The others are quite bright ;)

  7. I recognized those clothes the minute I saw them! You're fine with having photographed them - I asked when I was there!


  8. I love the bright colours: these are lovely clothes. I had never heard of Linda Jackson so I've followed your links to find out about her. Such beauty!
    Thanks for sharing the exhibition photos.

  9. Thank you so much for sharing this eye candy. I've not heard of the artist, and find her pieces over-the-top inspiring. Such beautiful use of color, and the shapes are so artistic. Fun!

  10. What an eye catching exhibit! Thanks for sharing.

  11. Thanks so much for posting these. I had quite forgotten Linda jackson - Jenny Kee I remebered but mostly beacuse she published knitting patterns. The colors are fabulous!

  12. Lovely! I'm drawn to all the color.