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Cartoon depicting Nicholson's view of the 1980s in sculptural terms


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Cartoon depicting Nicholson's view of the 1980s in sculptural terms

Object information


Created by Peter Nicholson during a talk at the launch of the National Museum's 'Rubbery Years' exhibition at Old Parliament House in 1994. He starts with two figures which he calls Robert James Lee Michelangelo and Paul Rodin, representing Bob Hawk and Paul Keating. They draw a model of how they think Australia should look, which is a horse with a free flowing tail (the floating dollar) and a toned and muscled rider, representing the Australian entrepreneur. The rider holds a sword, representing exports. The pair then begin to sculpt their model out of Italian marble but as they proceed the back legs crumble and break, representing the loss of banks such as Tricontinental and Pyramid, and they have to be propped up by taxpayers and shareholders. The front legs also break off, representing the rise in unemployment, and are propped up by the CES giving out unemployment benefits. The figure on the horse becomes fat and heavy and looks a lot like Alan Bond who, instead of holding a sword clutches a large IOU to the Bank of Hong Kong. On his head they sculpt a winged keel and the overall effect is of the entrepreneur weighing down the Australian economy'.

Physical description

Crayon on brown paper cartoon depicting cartoonist Nicholson's view of the 1980s in sculptural terms. It has been signed and dated by him.

Object information

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