Robert Boynes's images correspond to the classic definition of modernity given by Baudelaire, who said that modern images fused the eternal with the transitory.
The luminous expanses of white canvas breathing through grainy residues of black, red and yellow in Boynes's paintings symbolise the constancy of time and space in relation to the mortal dust of individual existence.
Derived from contemporary photographs which evoke alienation, cosmopolitism, displacement and the speeding-up of events in both private and public spheres, the reduction of all to floating grains and scattered molecules creates a sober, essentially tragic vision of contemporary existence.
The fifteen year period covered by this survey, curated by Terence Maloon, is the remarkable culmination of a career which began in Adelaide in the 1960s, and makes a resume of of Boynes's lifelong preoccupations.
Robert Boynes was the head of the Painting Workshop at the ANU School of Art between 1978 and 2006. The School of Art is celebrating its fortieth year in 2017.