REDFORD, Scott; A painting by Ritchey Sealy #8
The surfboard is a key image in Scott Redford's work, much of which takes surfing as its subject. In 1997, he had a red surfboard made by Chris Garrett of Phantom Surfboards, as it was known at the time, which was emblazoned with the date 7066AD; a development from Redford's sculptural works in the form of dates or words piled end on end in columns. Titled Perpetual abstraction (7066 A.D.), the work, which is also in the Gallery's Collection (Acc. no. 2009.041), featured in a number of photographs showing the board among the sand dunes of Surfers Paradise, on the Gold Coast.
In 2007, Redford invited artist Ritchey Sealy to paint a series of beach scenes based on these photographs, but showing a surfboard bearing the date 9970AD. The date seems impossibly far into the future, and with each new work, the year in the future becomes more distant. A board was mocked up for Sealy to paint in situ on his own beaches in southern New South Wales.
Redford first become aware of Sealy's paintings on the internet auction site eBay. Sealy paints in real time, but also on Second Life, the internet-based computer game that allows the player to create an avatar who represents one's ideal self in one's ideal world. The paintings that Sealy makes, both real and virtual, loosely follow the tradition of Australian Impressionism, and it was their innocence and unaffected nature that appealed to Redford.