Max Middleton has enjoyed a long and highly acclaimed career as a professional artist, exhibiting for nearly 60 years. He continues to paint full-time at the age of 82.
Max has a great interest in the Australian landscape. As a plein air painter, he faithfully renders what he sees. He has an extraordinary ability to capture light on canvas.
Max chooses to paint very diverse subjects: pumpkins lying in a vegetable garden, a figure reclining on sun-drenched sand, horses ploughing a paddock, treeferns standing in damp rainforests. Vitality infuses them all. Born in Melbourne in1922, Max knew from the age of 12 that he wanted to be an artist. By the age of 16 he was learning to draw at the National Gallery School. His good-natured father took him on Sunday drives to find suitable sites at which to stop and paint. He also studied privately with Septimus Power. Power was both a mentor and a friend who strongly influenced Max's career. Power expressed his confidence in Max's technical competence by inviting Max to assist with teaching.
Max painted for two years throughout Europe in the early fifties. He studied in London and Florence, and viewed the work held by major galleries including the Tate, Uffizi and the Prado. Max continued his tour painting in Wales, Ireland, Paris and Spain and in the flourishing art community of Cornwall. It was in regional Spain that he chose to paint the people of the area, and since then, the human figure has been a recurring subject in his paintings. Since his first exhibition at age 23, Max has held 60 exhibitions throughout Australia. Max's success belies his quiet commitment to his work, and his gentle reverence for life.