About the Artwork
Aleks Danko describes the face in this painting as that of an idiot. He often includes this image as an onlooker in his work. Danko sourced the image from an engraving by the eighteenth century artist William Hogarth from his book The Analysis of Beauty (1753). This is one of several faces illustrated by Hogarth to demonstrate different styles and use of line. For Hogarth, the simple lines of this face are reminiscent of a child’s drawing. For curator Glenn Barkley, Danko’s work portrays an allegorical tragi-comic figure, one which brings to mind Shakespeare’s Falstaff, or the idiocy of some of Samuel Beckett’s characters.
The son of Ukrainian migrants, Aleks Danko grew up in Adelaide. In his diverse artistic practice, he interrogates political and cultural elements of Australian society, and draws on the suburban landscape of his youth.
– About the artist
Born 1950 Adelaide, South Australia. Lives and works Daylesford, Victoria.