Culture and Cosmos Component 2, 1997
oil, pigment on jute
signed, dated and inscribed with title (on the reverse)
Sherman Galleries, Sydney
Acquired from the above by the present owner in 1997
John McCaughey Memorial Art Prize 1997, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, 3 December 1997-23 February 1998
"Colour is used by Borgelt for both its symbolic and sensual resonance...Rubbed into the surface with the artist's fingers and hands, this pure pigment vibrates and shimmers in the light. To caress the canvas and build the surface in this intimate way takes Borgelt's work into the realm of sculptural construction, underpinning her exploration of what lies beneath the skin." (Victoria Lynn, Marion Borgelt, Art and Australia monograph, Craftsman House, Sydney, 1996, p.15)
Courtesy of the artist
Celebrated Australian artist Marion Borgelt produces works of astonishing power that make poignant sensory exchanges. Art critic John McDonald has said her work 'relates to a limitless range of physical and organic phenomena.'
A synopsis of Borgelt's work can't be attributed to any one medium. She has worked variously, in wool, stone, wax, stainless steel, organic matter, canvas and felt; and more recently, she has come to work with site-specific and large-scale public art projects. With each incarnation of Borgelt's practice, one comes to understand hers to be a craft that in defining itself continues to expand ever outwards. Her optical abstractions are born of fierce curiosity; semiotics, language and phenomenology can be counted among her great catalysts.
Having completed formal training in 1980, Borgelt was showing with Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery in Sydney by 1982, which was also the year that marked the artist's inclusion in the fourth 'Biennale of Sydney', subsequently cemented with her inclusion in the 1985 'Australian Perspecta', at the Art Gallery of New South Wales.
Borgelt lives and works in Sydney, though her career has been shaped internationally. Postgraduate studies in New York on the Peter Brown traveling scholarship took her to America from 1979-80; and a Fellowship from the French government, commencing in 1989, allowed her to live and work in France, where she stayed on a further eight years.
Exhibiting for many years with Sherman Galleries, Sydney and Christine Abrahams Gallery, Melbourne, she is currently represented by Dominik Mersch Gallery, Sydney; Turner Galleries, Perth; and Fehily Contemporary, Melbourne.
Hers is an art for all times and places, an art that concentrates on the universal qualities of nature, and the symbols with which we record our deeper understandings of the world. There are few Australian artists so versatile or so creatively ambitious; so capable of occupying an impossible middle ground between spirituality and science, between microcosm and macrocosm, the corporate foyer and the cathedral. (John McDonald, 'Australian Art Collector', 2011)