The auction has been closed.
56 x 61 cm / 22 x 24 in
76 x 81 cm / 30 x 32 in
Oil on board
Signed lower right
A private collection, Hong Kong
This breathtaking new painting will be the largest and no doubt a very popular centrepiece in Watson's forthcoming Melbourne exhibition DIORAMAS. It was completed this week after six weeks near constant work, and demonstrates an exciting development in the artist's career, exploring personal themes relevant to his experience of the global pandemic and lock downs. Watson's imagination was sparked by seeing an empty store display window and imagining London based French model Eddy Grim showering inside it. In contrast to him, a Royal Life Guard is still and resting - a metaphor for the memories of international travel which have been on pause for many including the artist.
"Walking our dogs along beautiful Collins Street in Melbourne during lock down and seeing the empty luxury fashion house's windows was both unprecedented and surprisingly inspiring. I thought about the same designer boutiques I've visited when travelling abroad before the pandemic, and how much I also miss visiting art museums and working with new models." wrote Watson.
Despite their dramatically different personas, a striking feature of the scene is the two men unified by their tilted heads and closed eyes, as they appear to lean into one another. As astonishing as it is intimate.
Extraordinarily fine painted detail is evident in the Life Guards uniform, helmet and saddlery, which is complemented by the intricate rendering of Eddy's tattoos and hair in this fine work which possesses excellent composition and convincing depth of field.
A sophisticated and restrained colour palette where scarlet red and Prussian blue pop against the muted tones reinforcing the visual impact of this elegant homoerotic masterpiece.
"I have been a proud collector of Ross' paintings for many years. His art is astounding in its beauty, emotion, and reverence for our humanity and the world we live in. His attention to the smallest details, and use of light, dark and colour, rivals art's greatest masters."
James J. O'Donnell, Patron, art collector, NYC
"We are loving our new acquisition and we know that 'Nathan, view to Florence' will bring us endless years of joy. Thanks for sharing your talent. We love your work so keep it up!"
Paul Zahra and Duncan Peerman, Sydney
"As avid art collectors we are very proud to have Ross' stunningly handsome work in our collection. His art brings us great joy and we love to share his work with our friends and visitors. We were absolutely thrilled to recently add 'Two Soldiers' to our collection."
Christopher Cosier & Chris Webber, Sydney
"I purchased the original painting 10 years ago at your gallery during Mardi Gras and it has given me enormous pleasure ever since. I remember standing in the gallery for a couple of hours wondering if I should buy it. I have never regretted that decision."
Jon Anderson and Lance Johnson, Palm Springs
"Your art hanging around our home provides us with such pleasure, and we can’t wait for A-Bay to join the Ross Watson family."
Haydon Elliot and Greg Moses, Melbourne