Sydney graving dock
ID numberART30253
Collection typeArt
TitleSydney graving dock
MeasurementFramed: 75.8 x 103.6 x 3.8 cm; Unframed: 59.8 x 87.6 cm
Object typePainting
MakerMcClintock, Herbert
Place madeAustralia: New South Wales, Sydney
Date made1943
Physical descriptiongouache, pen and ink, pencil on cardboard
CopyrightAWM copyright
DescriptionIn this work the focus is placed on the immensity of the structure being built. The scale of the enterprise is emphasised by the towering walls, gantry cranes and a section of pipe being hoisted high above the workers. Herbert McClintock places the viewer in the centre of the building site, with the detail of the far end of the dock lost in the distance, implying that this massive place extends beyond the picture surface. Although there are hundreds of people at work, except for the foreground figures, they are suggested rather than explicitly depicted. McClintock's brand of social realism is one that celebrates the heroism of labour, and the vital harmony needed between workers to successfully complete their sometimes daunting tasks.