Frederick McCubbin1855 - 1917 A camp in the bush, Macedon 1910
- oil on canvas
A camp in the bush is one of at least two paintings identically titled and dated 1910, and probably painted in the Mt Macedon district north-east of Melbourne.
Although the impressionist palette is not used in this painting (there are too many ochres and brown-greens) some features suggest a sympathy with the broad aims of impressionism. In contrast to this work, McCubbin’s paintings of the ‘Heidelberg’ period, and many of his subject paintings, indicate the influence of the French Barbizon school which practised plein-air painting, fluid, open brushwork, and tonal values.
Painters such as Julian Ashton and John Ford Paterson were already practising plein-air painting in Melbourne, and Abram Louis Buvelot, although he finished his paintings in the studio, was an acknowledged influence on the art of Frederick McCubbin.
This small canvas A camp in the bush was painted three years after McCubbin’s first trip to England and France. He had been deeply impressed by the late works of J.M.W Turner, and the French impressionists Monet, Manet and Sisley.
Text by Christine Sharkey, from The Song of the Lamb: The Wesfarmers Collection of Australian Art, 1989