Born in Sydney in 1881, John Wardell Power was a medical practitioner who, after the first World War, abandoned medicine for his career in art. Australia's first cubist painter, he lived most of his life in England and Europe. He died on the island of Jersey on 1943. On the death of his wife in 1962, Sydney University received a bequest of around $4 million Power had made for the encouragement of artists. This led to the establishment of the Power Institute of Fine Arts, and subsequently to the Museum of Contemporary Art.
The total number of works by John Power offered for sale by auction since 1979 is 29, of which 21 (72%) were sold. The highest price recorded for the artist is $170,800 for Basket of Fruit, c. 1936 sold by Bonhams in June 2015. No works have been offered for sale this year, and the last sale we have recorded for the artist was in 2023. Works by John Power are held by the National Gallery of Australia, Art Gallery of Western Australia and a further four major public national galleries (see list below).
John Power is listed in the following standard biographical references:
Could the second and subsequent works by this artist sold after June 9, 2010 for over $1,000 be liable for the Artists' Resale Royalty? More info…
No, ineligible. The artist has been deceased for more than 70 years.
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