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Art-lovers were shocked to hear of the sudden, untimely death following a motor-car accident of Dorrit Black, Adelaide's first and,. perhaps, least understood "nmodern" artist.
She, indeed, least of all, regarded herself as a "modern". Her "Group 9,"' of which she was founder and leader, and which exhibited regularly each year, con sisted of artists who were neither extremely "modern" nor yet "tradi tional," and I rather feel that her real inclination was.always towards the Society of Arts, of which she was a council member, rather than the Contemporary Art Society, in which she had also held office. Her full name was Dorethea Foster Black. Trained under such outstanding teachers as Julian Ashton, Elioth Gruner, Ian McNab, Claud Flight and, in Paris, Andre L'hote and Albert Gleizes, she re mained a strict follower of academic cubism, of which her "Mirmande" in the Adelaide National Gallery is an outstanding example. Although her work has always been deeply respected by the more informed section of Adelaide artists.
she has so consistently- been artis tically cold-shouldered and ignored since her return here about 20 years ago that it is amazing how she maintained the courage to fight on against so much prejudice and mis understanding. Regarded as not sufficiently "advanced" by one section, and too "modern" by the other, it will be many years before her exceptional talent can be properly appreciated in its right perspective, as it most certainly will be. In the meantime, those who Sfondly knew "Dorrit" will deeply feel the loss of a lovable friend, an active and a cultivated mind, and one whose whole life was devoted to the highest and purest concept of beauty and art, and to an extreme idealism in the field of politics-as also in the case of Milton. not an unusual mixture in an artist.-Ivor Francis.
Patronage of art has always been a great essential for its promotion--and survival-be it in the form of composition, painting, sculpture or writing.
T he latest copy of "Etude" to arrive from America gives promi nence to the MacDowell Colony, founded in memory of the com poser Edward MacDowell, and which, under the direction of his widow. has been built into a place for quiet work with the most favor able conditions. Originally:the composer's property, this present artistic centre at Peterboro, New Hampshire (US), was transferred to the MacDowell Memorial Association shortly after his death in 1908. Speaking recently of the colony, Dane Rudhyar, author and com poser, said, "If ever an American artist, whose talent has not earned Dhim a manor of his own as yet, should think longingly of a place
where he could work under ideal conditions, the MacDowell Colony is the answer to his dreams." The 23 studios, scattered in isolated positions over the 600 forest acres. where no callers are per mitted, unless by special invitation, would indeed seem to be the com poser's paradise. Mrs. MacDowell, now 93, lives in a quiet corner of the estate--The Hillcrest. More than 40 years ago she dedicated the remainder of .her life to amassing the funds neces sary to make the future of the memorial scheme secure. In her original role of noted woman pianist, she devoted most of hier time to giving benefit concerts and collecting contributions.-Nadra Penalurick.