y Art in Australia periodical  
Date: 1916-1921
Date: 1922-1938
Date: 1939-1940
Date: 1941-1942
Issue Details: First known date: 1916; Latest issue indexed: 1933 1916
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Latest Issues

y Art in Australia no. 48 (3rd Series) February 1933 Z651458 1933 periodical issue
y Art in Australia no. 41 (3rd Series) December Hugh McCrae , Adrian Feint (illustrator), Sydney : Art in Australia , 1931 Z1279490 1931 periodical issue
y Art in Australia no. 35 (3rd Series) December 1930 Z1209581 1930 periodical issue Special issue devoted to the artwork of Norman Lindsay.
y Art in Australia no. 33 (3rd series) August-September 1930 Z1336160 1930 periodical issue
y Art in Australia no. 17 (3rd Series) September 1926 Z622240 1926 periodical issue

AbstractHistoryArchive Description

The first issue of Art in Australia appeared in 1916, edited by Sydney Ure Smith, Bertram Stevens and Charles Lloyd Jones. Initially, all three editors were involved in other projects: Ure Smith, a graphic artist was director of the advertising agency, Smith and Julius; Stevens continued as editor of the Lone Hand; and Jones, the grandson of retailer David Jones, was training as a store manager. Employing the services of highly skilled technicians, Art in Australia published reproductions of extremely high quality, building, over time, a network of important associations with many of Australia's visual artists, advertisers, printers and publishers. During the first five years of operation, the magazine was published and distributed by Angus and Robertson, but the editors retained significant control over the layout and content, frequently ignoring objections from the publisher. The company Art in Australia was incorporated in 1921, becoming the publisher of Art in Australia and several other magazines, including the Home.

At first, the journal was devoted to the pictorial arts but pressure from Norman Lindsay influenced consideration of an expanded scope to include literary works. A literary supplement to Art in Australia was proposed in 1917 and prepared during 1918, but by December the plan had fallen through. Despite Lindsay's plans, Art in Australia published only a small amount of poetry and fiction during the 1920s. Regular contributions were received from Lindsay, his son, Jack, Kenneth Slessor and Hugh McCrae, frequently exhibiting Lindsay's beliefs about literature and art. The Lindsays and Hugh McCrae all had individual numbers devoted to their works, the latter contributing a greater combination of writing and art. Other contributors included Dorothea Mackellar, Zora Cross, Dowell O'Reilly and Furnley Maurice.

Poetry dominated the literary contributions, but an attempt was made in 1924 to encourage the writing of fiction with a short story competition: the winning story was Katharine Susannah Prichard's 'The Grey Horse'. Prichard contributed several other stories and poems, but by the early 1930s literature was rarely printed in Art and Australia. The companion magazine, the Home, however, printed many of these contributors, becoming the more dominant publisher of prose and poetry in the Art in Australia conglomerate.

Art in Australia was an expensive production, relying, in its first years, on advertising and occasional contributions from Jones to meet costs. At its peak price of twelve shillings and sixpence, it was out of the reach of many artists, but changes to format and price, secured a loyal readership and a significant influence on the Australian art scene. Furthermore, profits from the Home often balanced any shortfall by Art in Australia, enabling Art in Australia Pty Ltd to further enhance its reputation in the industry. This was confirmed in 1934 when the Fairfax press bought the magazines, hoping to challenge the dominance of Fashion and Society and Vogue. Ure Smith and Leon Gellert (who became co-editor after Stevens' death in 1922) were retained but the magazines did not produce the challenge Fairfax had hoped for. After an inamicable retirement in 1938, Ure Smith and Gellert were replaced by Kenneth Wilkinson who remained as editor until 1941 when Peter Bellew was appointed for the final eighteen months of the magazine's life. During this time, Art in Australia adopted a more sympathetic position towards modernist art and occasionally published poetry, notably that of Max Harris and Alister Kershaw. Art in Australia ceased operation in August 1942.

Notes

  • RANGE: 1916-1942
  • FREQUENCY: Bi-annual (1916-1917); quarterly (1918-1930); bi-monthly (1930-1934); quarterly (1934-42)
  • SIZE: 24cm (1916-1940); 30cm ( two issues in 1922, 1941-1942); 50-90 pages
  • PRICE: seven shillings and sixpence (1919); 12 shillings and sixpence (1920, 1927-1929); six shillings (1921-1922); three shillings and sixpence (1930-1934); five shillings (1934-1942)
    • Four series:
    • 1st series:1(1916)-11(1921)
    • 2nd series:1:1-2(1922)
    • 3rd series:1(1922)-81(1940)
    • 4th series:1(1941)-6(1942)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

First known date: 1916

Works about this Work

y Making Australian Art 1916-49 : Sydney Ure Smith, Patron and Publisher Nancy Underhill , South Melbourne : Oxford University Press , 1991 Z1041402 1991 single work bibliography
The Infernal Journals Croesus , 1965 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , August vol. 4 no. 10 1965; (p. 189)
Introduction Hugh McCrae , 1931 single work prose
— Appears in: Art in Australia , December no. 41 (3rd Series) 1931; (p. 5)
The Story of The Home Sydney Ure Smith , 1930 single work prose
— Appears in: The Home , 1 March vol. 11 no. 3 1930; (p. 38-39, 60B, 60D)
'The Home was launched in February, 1920, as a quarterly. It is ten years since the first issue was printed, and it is interesting, in looking back, to realise just exactly what has been accomplished in that time...To some it may seem presumptuous for the Editors of The Home to become retrospective at the end of a decade, but when one considers the many attempts to create and carry on decently-produced periodicals within even that time, they may be forgiven for feeling a trifle elated, for the moment, with their particular success. We have always had confidence in the Australian public's appreciation of any production which can at least equal similar work from abroad - and in many respects the Editors feel The Home can stand comparison with the best journals published in London and New York...The Home stands for quality in Australia. It has created a standard of taste. It has become the authority on what is best. No considerations have caused it to lower its standard at any time, with the result that it is recognised as the premier journal of good taste in the Commonwealth and its advice is accepted without question on matters concerning interior decoration, domestic architecture, garden planning and works of art.'
The Key Florence Lascelles , 1922 single work drama
— Appears in: The Home , (Summer) 1 December vol. 3 no. 4 1922; (p. 91)
Cleverly written as a conversational critique of Australian artists/writers, this three scene drama (which includes cast and stage directions) is actually a full-page advertisement for Art in Australia i.e. 'the distinctive Magazine' that 'is published by the people who publish The Home'.
y Making Australian Art 1916-49 : Sydney Ure Smith, Patron and Publisher Nancy Underhill , South Melbourne : Oxford University Press , 1991 Z1041402 1991 single work bibliography
Introduction Hugh McCrae , 1931 single work prose
— Appears in: Art in Australia , December no. 41 (3rd Series) 1931; (p. 5)
The Key Florence Lascelles , 1922 single work drama
— Appears in: The Home , (Summer) 1 December vol. 3 no. 4 1922; (p. 91)
Cleverly written as a conversational critique of Australian artists/writers, this three scene drama (which includes cast and stage directions) is actually a full-page advertisement for Art in Australia i.e. 'the distinctive Magazine' that 'is published by the people who publish The Home'.
The Story of The Home Sydney Ure Smith , 1930 single work prose
— Appears in: The Home , 1 March vol. 11 no. 3 1930; (p. 38-39, 60B, 60D)
'The Home was launched in February, 1920, as a quarterly. It is ten years since the first issue was printed, and it is interesting, in looking back, to realise just exactly what has been accomplished in that time...To some it may seem presumptuous for the Editors of The Home to become retrospective at the end of a decade, but when one considers the many attempts to create and carry on decently-produced periodicals within even that time, they may be forgiven for feeling a trifle elated, for the moment, with their particular success. We have always had confidence in the Australian public's appreciation of any production which can at least equal similar work from abroad - and in many respects the Editors feel The Home can stand comparison with the best journals published in London and New York...The Home stands for quality in Australia. It has created a standard of taste. It has become the authority on what is best. No considerations have caused it to lower its standard at any time, with the result that it is recognised as the premier journal of good taste in the Commonwealth and its advice is accepted without question on matters concerning interior decoration, domestic architecture, garden planning and works of art.'
The Infernal Journals Croesus , 1965 single work criticism
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , August vol. 4 no. 10 1965; (p. 189)
Last amended 12 Aug 2005 10:32:59
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