Five Bells Kenneth Slessor Analysis

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My immediate response to the artwork is how busy and alive the artwork is. I also noticed how John Olsen only variations of the colours blue and green for his artwork with some yellow and white. The longer I looked at the artwork the more images I noticed. I could decipher illustrations of fish in the water, ships and even little houses. This shows how much thought John Olsen has put into this remarkable piece. At first glance, it looks almost like a seed that has burst releasing, freeing plants and water from the sapling. But as you look closer you are able to perceive a street in a small village that is quite close to the sea. At the very right of the ‘seed’ you can visibly see a bridge and even a few lampposts. Without reading the poem…show more content…
The artwork ‘Five Bells’ by John Olsen symbolises the more thoughtful side of his personality. It is clearly shown in the artwork how much depth and thought the artist has taken to create what was produced. The details and almost unnoticeable metaphors in the artwork display the thought and effort he had invested into it to create such an intricate and amazing piece. Some interpretations spectators could envisage the artwork as are- the most popular one is a seed. The outlined disfigured ‘circle’ is deciphered as a seed bursting with ‘life’- the sea and earth. Some can even see crabs, sea urchins and seaweed branching from the seed as well. Another interpretation is a skull-like figure with a body from the shoulders, up. The ‘bridge’ resembles an eye and the disfigured circle almost looks like a skull head. Because the ‘Five Bells’ is inspired by the poem ‘Five Bells’ by Kenneth Slessor, the last stanza in the poem reminded me the most of the artwork created by John Olsen because the description in the poem ties in with the painting perfectly. “I looked out of my window in the dark At waves with diamond quills and combs of

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