Norman Alfred William Lindsay (1879-1969)

Norman Alfred William Lindsay (1879-1969) was an Australian artist, etcher, sculptor, writer, art critic, novelist, cartoonist and amateur boxer. One of the most prolific and popular Australian artists of his generation. Lindsay attracted both acclaim and controversy for his works, many of which infused the Australian landscape with erotic pagan elements and were deemed by his critics to be “anti-Christian, anti-social and degenerate”.

In 1895, Lindsay moved to Melbourne to work on a local magazine with his older brother Lionel. In 1901, he and Lionel joined the staff of the Sydney Bulletin magazine and review. His association there would last fifty years. Lindsay travelled to Europe in 1909 with Rose his wife following later. The Lindsays returned to Australia in 1911.

His sumptuous nudes were highly controversial. In 1940, Lindsay took sixteen crates of paintings, drawings and etchings to the U.S. to protect them from the war. Unfortunately, they were discovered when the train they were on caught fire and were impounded and subsequently burned as pornography by American officials. The artist’s older brother Lionel remembered Lindsay’s reaction: “Don’t worry, I’ll do more.”

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