Compelling vesture No. 1, Robert Jacks
  • Artist
    Robert Jacks
  • Born
    1943
  • Title
    Compelling vesture No. 1
  • Date of Production
    1965
  • Medium
    oil on canvas, charcoal
  • Dimensions
    152.4 x 121.8 cm
  • Credit Details
    Gift of Dr Eric Westbrook, 1994

Robert Jacks

Compelling vesture No. 1

Before leaving for North America in 1968 where he was to spend the next ten years participating in the minimalist art movement, Jacks held two solo exhibitions.  The first of these, which was held in 1966 at Melbourne's Gallery A, sold out with works going to private and public collectors and Jacks was credited with introducing a new phase to Australian art.

Trained in sculpture at Prahran Technical College and painting at RMIT, painting was for Jacks an extension of sculptural ideas.  Painted in 1965, Compelling vesture I is one of a series of five paintings with a title derived from James Joyce's Ulysses.  Jacks was so taken with Joyce's turn of phrase that he would often simply open the book and pick a line at random, like a medieval bibliomancer.

As with many of the works created by Jacks during this period Compelling Vesture with its predominantly grey colour and abstract forms, has been described as cool, delicate and sophisticated.