This work by Rita Angus has come to symbolise the hard-edged clarity of the Canterbury school of landscape painting. It was made following the artist’s ten-day visit to the remote high country railway settlement of Cass in 1936 with painters Louise Henderson and Julia Scarvell. The Canterbury style was also associated with an atmosphere of isolation and emptiness, often emphasised through
small signs of human occupation and intervention placed within a much larger natural environment. While these aspects play an important role in Cass, the work also benefits from a sense of expectation, as we wait, with that solitary, overcoat-clad figure, for the train to arrive.
(Absence, May 2023)