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Elizabeth Rooney: Various Drawings

Elizabeth Rooney, Port Jackson Scroll and other works of art

Elizabeth Rooney profile

The artist

Elizabeth Rooney is best known for her incredibly detailed urban scenes and particularly those around Sydney and in providing social commentary.  Elizabeth was born in Sydney in 1929  and grew up in Strathfield, studying at the Santa Sabina School. Later, Elizabeth studied at the East Sydney Technical College until 1949 including studies with Herbert Gallop. With Joy Ewart, Elizabeth helped to establish etching facilities at the Workshop Art Centre in Willoughby in 1963. By 1976, Rooney had made a name for herself having created over 250 prints on a variety of media. Elizabeth exhibited widely in solo and group exhibtiions including in New York, Washington and the British Print Biennale 1968-1969.

Elizabeth's works of art are represented in the National Gallery of Australia, the Art Gallery of New South Wales, South Australian Art Gallery, National Gallery of Victoria, the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery and in the British Museum's prints collection.

Elizabeth passed away on the 2nd March 2016.

Port Jackson Scroll by Elizabeth Rooney

The Works of Art

There are four works of art (prints) in the University of Canberra's Art Collection by Elizabeth Rooney. These works were created between 1969 and 1973 and focus upon the urban landscapes in and around Sydney. 'This is Russell Lea' and 'Distributor 2' depict busy urban motorway scenes in the heart of Sydney. Where the former is more of an urban scene, the latter is more of a built up city centre (close to the harbour bridge approaches). The View from No 9 Warringah focusses on Rooney's own garden. Port Jackson Scroll, which was created in 1973, depicts the Sydney Opera House under construction. It deliberately resembles a piece of old parchment as Rooney makes the social comment on the historical impact of the new addition to Sydney.  Port Jackson Scroll can be compared to another print of the Opera House under construction by Mervyn Smith. The construction of the Opera House proved to be just a much a spectacle as the finished structure.

This is Russell Lea by Elizabeth Rooney Distributor 2 by Elizabeth Rooney


Centre for Australian Art, Prints and Print-Making, Elizabeth Rooney,

Sydney Morning Herald, Obituaries,