Detail photos for this Artwork
This large and attractive oil painting is ‘pure’ Hugh Sawrey, and is a popular example of Sawrey’s unique style of painting that depicts life on the land and the time he spent as a stockman and a drover, before he became an artist.
“The Boundary Rider, Western Queensland”, with its beautiful, rich colour and depiction of wide open space with a broad blue sky, evokes the isolation on large outback stations.
Sawrey tells the tale here of the the job of a boundary rider, which was done on horseback during Sawrey’s early days as a stockman.
A Boundary Rider’s task was to ride his horse, sometimes with the company of a pack horse carrying supplies and tools, tracking alongside the long stretches of fencing on large stations, many kilometres long, checking they were in good order, and to repair them where necessary.
Because of the distances a boundary rider travelled each day, stations had small outlying huts at points around the property where the boundary rider would sleep for the night, before moving on the next morning to check the next long stretch of fence, a necessary job to keep livestock safe within the station boundaries.
It was a solitary job that required hours of riding each day. The trips around the property could be for days on end to cover all the fence line, such was the large size of some stations. Boundary riders had to be tough, doing many kilometres in the saddle each day and able to accept the solitary nature of their job. A hut to rest for the night or a homecoming to wife and children, would have been a welcome sight.