born Russia, 1897; arrived Australia 1923; died 1958
An accident I saw 1948
oil on board
Gift of the AG Morant Estate, 2005
© National Gallery of Victoria
Life’s simple pleasures and struggles were the main inspiration for Vassilieff’s street scenes of the 1940s and ’50s. Here, the artist documents the aftermath of an accident in a characteristically bold palette, generating a sense of intrigue by capturing a small neighbourhood dog on the scene: potentially another witness to—or cause of—the tumult of a few moments prior.
This painting is one of twelve works by Danila Vassilieff originally loaned to the Gallery in 1979 by the estate of AG (Tony) Morant. Vassilieff met Morant, a local mechanic, in 1957, when he moved to Melbourne to take up a position teaching art at Eltham High School. They became good friends, with Vassilieff bequeathing several works to Morant before his death in 1958.