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Delafield Cook, WilliamDate of birth and death: 1936-
Nationality: AustralianUploaded artworks: 12
William Delafield Cook was born in Melbourne in 1936 into a family with a rich artistic tradition. Soon after finishing art school, he left for Europe, planning to be away for one year. But it would be eight years before he returned to Australia and then only for short periods. In 1962, he married an English woman, Sally Bovington, and settled permanently in London.
In the early years, he was struggling to find his own voice as a painter. The late '60s saw him move away from a preoccupation with abstract work to intensely realistic works. Heavily influenced by the photography of William Henry Fox Talbot, Delafield Cook he started doing charcoal drawings of the things around him â€” pumpkins, leeks and pieces of furniture.
He is probably best known for his monumental paintings of haystacks, first begun in the mid-'70s and inspired by sighting such a haystack in country Victoria.
Delafield Cook likened the structure in the landscape to the temples he had seen in Greece. For him they were grand statements sitting in the landscape. Each painting was literally months in the making.
It was also the beginning of a reconnection with the Australian landscape. Over the past two decades, Delafield Cook has made many journeys into the country. Hanging Rock, Euroa, and Arthur Boyd's Bundanon have become the focus of many paintings â€” paintings imbued with a strangely deadpan and often haunting quality and which tell us little about the painter himself.
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