Mark Dober

M a r k   D o b e r

Lake Daylesford, Summer (cloudy sky)

I make my paintings and drawings in the landscape. Since moving from Melbourne to Castlemaine in 2016, my work has been mostly made at a variety of sites in this region. Additionally, I have made work over the last few years at residencies in the ACT and NSW.

Working on site, I seek to convey the experiential with directness and immediacy. My response comprises a blend of the observed and imagined. I view the organic relationship between looking and mark-making as intrinsic to the meaning of my work — integrated expressions of a direct and tactile engagement with place. I want the viewer to experience a sense of immersion by physically engaging in the activity of viewing that mirrors my own physical engagement when making the work.

Mark Dober obtained a Bachelor of Fine Art (Honours) from RMIT University, Melbourne, in 1990 and a Master of Fine Art from Victorian College of the Arts in 1997, having won the Stella Dilger Art Award. Subsequently, in 2005, he obtained a PhD in Fine Art (Painting) from Monash University and was awarded the Mollie Holman Doctoral Medal.

Dober is a frequent exhibitor in national contemporary art prizes, including the Swan Hill Print and Drawing Award; Rick Amor Self-Portrait Prize; Salon des Refusés; Paul Guest Drawing Prize; Flow Contemporary Watercolour Prize; Calleen Art Award; NSW Plein Air Painting Prize and the Arthur Guy Painting Prize.

His work is represented in public, private and corporate collections in Australia and abroad, including the National Gallery of Australia; Old Mutual, London, UK; National Bank of Australia; City of Port Phillip; Australian Council of Trade Unions; Victorian College of the Arts; Methodist Ladies College and City of Whitehorse Art Collection.

Dober lives in the central Victorian goldfields town of Castlemaine, making paintings and drawings en plein air in the surrounding landscape whilst exploring particular sites. He also makes large-scale en plein air works during various artist-in-residencies throughout Australia, culminating in exhibitions with the associated regional galleries.

His recent exhibitions include The Edge of Town at Castlemaine Art Museum (2022); On the Land, Swan Hill Regional Gallery (2022) and Murrumbidgee at Wagga Wagga Art Gallery (2021). In 2023, large-scale en plein air works created during a residency at Bilpin were exhibited at Hawkesbury Regional Gallery (Wollemi).

Concomitant with his professional art practice, Dober is an independent art writer.

Mark Dober was elected to membership of the Australian Watercolour Institute in 2023.

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