Abstract

Born Plymouth, England 1946, arrived Australia 1949, arrived New York, United States 1989


A self taught artist, David Rankin was influenced by the Australian countryside in which he spent much of his youth, as well as the teachings of Buddhism and Asian art. Rankin found in Aboriginal, Indian, Chinese and Japanese art a proximity to spirituality that he respected and hoped to achieve through his own practice. In their abstracted form, his paintings offer a universal reading that is not restricted to any particular culture.

By the mid-1980s, lines appeared in Rankin’s paintings, delicate forms reminiscent of calligraphic markings. Lines and dots run throughout his body of work, which potentially are associated with metaphorical, spiritual, philosophical and the physical realms.

From 1992 Rankin took as subject matter the roles of husband and wife, and used the complimentary forces of yin and yang to depict this relationship. Around this time he introduced horizontal lines into his work to signify the bones of a rib cage from the biblical story of Ezekiel and its discussion of a valley of bones. This series was called The Prophecy of the Dry Bones.

Rankin has exhibited extensively, including Political Abstraction in the work of David Rankin, University of Queensland Gallery (2001), and David Rankin works 1967–2004, Tweed River Art Gallery and touring (2005). He is represented at the National Gallery of Australia, most state and several regional galleries, and is held in international collections including The Jewish Museum, New York.