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Welcome to the World of Antonio Dattilo-Rubbo


Dattilo-Rubbo in the early 1900s

This website is dedicated to a unique artist and highly respected art teacher who taught and mentored students Grace Cossington Smith, Donald Friend and Roy De Maistre who amongst many others went on to leave their own marks on Australian art.

Not only was Dattilo-Rubbo an inspiring, gifted teacher, he was also instrumental in founding the Manly Art Gallery & Museum. Today, this institution is one of the leading regional art galleries in New South Wales.

Dattilo-Rubbo in his Bligh Street Studio

  In these pages, learn about Dattilo-Rubbo's life as an artist,  and explore his works  that are held  in the permanent collection of the Manly Art Gallery & Museum.

 His influence as a teacher has been pivotal, as he mentored and encouraged so many of the early Australian
modernist artists in Sydney.

Dattilo-Rubbo sketching en plein-air in the early 1930s in Castle Hill

To this day, renowned sculptor  and art teacher Tom Bass (b. 1916) credits Dattilo-Rubbo with lasting influence. He says: "I regard what I learnt from Rubbo as the fundamentals for me. ... He is my primary teacher. I studied drawing with him, and I am heavily influenced by his teaching principles, in fact, I am teaching the same principles. I even find myself using the same words!" Read the interview with Tom Bass.

  The Manly Art Gallery & Museum holds over 100 letters, notes and photographs by Antonio Dattilo-Rubbo.

  This treasure has not been published before and is presented here for the first time, documenting the close involvement of Antonio Dattilo-Rubbo with the Gallery and his enthusiasm for the advancement of the arts particularly in Manly. You'll find the research in Documents.

A. Dattilo-Rubbo, 'Betty (Girl in red bonnet)', 1917 

We welcome your comments and feedback. Just send us a feedback form or email us on info@antoniodattilorubbo.com.au; you can read the latest comments, updates, news and more on Antonio Dattilo-Rubbo and this website in Updates.

This website was produced in 2010 by the Manly Art Gallery & Museum in celebration of the 80th anniversary of its establishment.

It has been funded by the Gordon Darling Foundation and Manly Council.

A. Dattilo-Rubbo, 'St. Matthews, The Corso, Manly', 1920

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Copyright Manly Art Gallery & Museum 2008. Funded by the Gordon Darling Foundation. Created by Banziger Hulme Fine Art Consultants.
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