In May 2017 Mr David Alsop, the great-nephew of Mr Rodney Alsop who with Conrad Sayce won the architectural Hackett Competition to design the Hackett Memorial buildings, donated to the University Archives a watercolour that had been in the Alsop family for over 80 years and remained in the Rodney Alsop collection until he inherited it in 1972.
The artwork, a watercolour of the interior of the Winthrop Hall, was commissioned in 1929 by Rodney Alsop. The watercolour depicts a perspective of the interior of Winthrop Hall produced by Cyril Arthur Farey [1888-1954] FRIBA, internationally acknowledged as one of the finest architect, draftsperson and colourist during 1920s – 1940s.
This artwork was submitted to the Royal Academy exhibition in 1929. Information about it was published in the Dailey News [Perth] Saturday 11 May 1929, p 6. “University of WA - Drawings in Royal Academy”.
The artwork combines the essential accuracy required of all architectural drawings with impressionistic stylistic features conveyed though urbane figures that populate his watercolours, the shafts of daylight used to pick up form with contrasting light and dark tones and his hall mark rendering of texture and depth using sunlight reflected on stone and glass surfaces.
The watercolour is on display in Special Collections & Archives, 2nd Floor Reid Library, and can be viewed from July – August, Monday to Friday 1pm to 4pm.
University Library +61 86488 7425