Collection Online
twigs, canvas, rocks, string, papier mâché, feathers, bones
(a-l) 216.0 × 160.0 × 607.0 cm (variable) (installation)
Accession Number
Australian Sculpture
Credit Line
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Purchased, 1980
© John Davis/Licensed by VISCOPY, Australia
Gallery location
Not on display
About the work

John Davis was a pioneering Australian artist who during his life achieved a critically acclaimed international reputation as a sculptor and installation artist. At the core of his practice, particularly evident in his late works, was an awareness of ecology and sensitivity to the elemental forces of nature and the effect of human actions.

Cape Schanck 1978 is not an illustration or reaction to the area. It received its title from the four rocks placed on the green canvas, which originally came from Cape Schanck. The form of the work was influenced by temples that Davis had seen in India, while other elements and materials relate to the formal qualities of sculptures by contemporary artists such as Robert Morris and Joseph Beuys with which Davis was familiar.