The Sitters

The SittersA narrow, vertical painting, tightly enclosing the scene. Her pale arm and her pale thigh. Viewed at a diagonal through an exceedingly tall doorway . . . just a glimpse of something . . .

An aging portrait artist meets a woman who unsettles him, yet inspires him to paint her. Reluctantly, at first, they are drawn together.

The ambiguity of the relationship between painter and subject is revealed through Alex Miller's subtle, sensuous narrative. The artist must watch and wait to trap the shy beast. For the skill of portraiture is in seeing beyond the face, beyond the likeness.

'An awesomely elegant, subtly sensuous, stylish exploration of the inner self of an ageing portrait artist . . . If there were doubts about the maturity of Australian fiction, this book puts those doubts to rest.' - Frank Moorhouse and Sue Woolfe, 1995 NSW Premier s Awards

'Elegant yet compassionate, austere yet profoundly human' - Veronica Brady, Australian Book Review

'You will read and re-read The Sitters' - Judith Rodriguez, The Age

'Like Patrick White, Miller uses the painter to portray the ambivalence of art and the artist. In The Sitters is the brooding genius of light. Its presence is made manifest in Miller's supple, painterly prose which layers words into textured moments.' - Simon Hughes, The Sunday Age

'It's perfect as a poem is perfect. There s not a word out of place and it says all the important things . . . I think it's The Great Australian Novel' - Sue Woolfe

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