Howard Arkley / by Geoff Harrison

For someone who was never entirely convinced of the work of Howard Arkley, the current exhibition at Tarrawarra Gallery was a revelation.  The key to appreciating his paintings seems to be to stand as close to them as you are allowed in order to  appreciate his technical skill.  His death from a heroin overdose in 1999, just shortly after making it to the Venice Biennale, added extra poignancy to the exhibition.  There is an almost manic quality to some of his work which may be an indicator of his eventual demise.