Sisters Christina Backus, Elizabeth McPhee and Patricia Wall


Good things come in threes, and that’s certainly the case over at Gallows Gallery at the moment.

The Glyde Street space is staging a vibrant exhibition by sisters Christina Backus, Elizabeth McPhee and Patricia Wall.

Called Three Sisters (of course!) the joint show is a marvellous collection of photographs and paintings by the talented trio.

The walls are adorned with an extensive range of works that show off Patricia’s colourful geometric paintings and Elizabeth and Christina’s evocative and distinctive images.

While very different in subject matter, style and approach, there is a curious and eye-catching symmetry about the three-way integrated works – something in the gene pool, perhaps.

Elizabeth’s mesmerising photographs are concerned with interacting shapes, both curved and linear, featuring the beautiful play of soft light and surface texture.

The images are presented both in black and white and colour and concentrate on man-made and natural subjects.

Having been a photography enthusiast as a child, she says her love of the medium has been reawakened in recent years.

“I rediscovered photography as an art form – using shape and form, line, texture, and above all, the magic of light.

“I seek out these elements, mainly in urban settings and architecture. I go into a whole other world when I see magically lit lines, shapes, textures and shadows coming together in a visual poem.”

Working in acrylic and gouache, Patricia says her brightly coloured, and tightly structured liner paintings have evolved from her love of architecture.

At Gallows, her bright works jump from the walls in a kaleidoscope of colour and structured form.

“I have always been inspired by the Russian Constructivists,” she says.

“It is my continued desire to create balanced and well-proportioned works in unpredictable colour combinations.

“The small format presentation adds an extra challenge in creating tension and harmony within a restricted space.”

Christina’s striking colour photographs are very much concerned with forms, landscape and urban, and the interplay of colour, textures and design.

She has the ability to reveal a grander design in everyday settings and scenes, focusing on key components and creating a powerful sense of time, place and atmosphere.

Her pieces are heavily influenced by the places she has visited throughout her life.

“From an early age I loved photography, largely due to my grandfather in whose darkroom I spent most of my time,” she recalls.

“I helped him by counting down the seconds for his superb prints all those years ago.

“Several years based in London afforded the opportunity to travel widely through Europe and The Mediterranean, and I still have thousands of slides packed carefully away.”

A visit to Gallows Gallery this week is a must if you are keen to see the captivating and beautiful work of three talented sisters working with paint and through the lens.

The Three Sisters exhibition runs at Gallows until Thursday 30 January.


Gallows Gallery

53 Glyde Street, Mosman Park

Phone +61 (08) 9286 4730

Tuesday – Thursday 10am – 4:30pm
Friday 10am – 4pm
Saturday 11am – 4:30pm
Sunday 2pm – 4:30pm
Monday Closed




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