Moya Dyring

Moya Dyring painted by Mary Alice Evatt in the 1930s Moya Dyring painted by Mary Alice Evatt in the 1930s

"Moya Claire Dyring (1909-1967), artist, was born on 10 February 1909 at Coburg, Melbourne, third child of Carl Peter Wilhelm Dyring, medical practitioner, and his second wife Dagmar Alexandra Esther, nee Cohn, both Victorian born. Moya was educated (1917-27) at Firbank Church of England Girls' Grammar School, Brighton. After visiting Paris in 1928, she studied (1929-32) at the National Gallery schools, Melbourne, and shared fellow student Sam Atyeo's interest in artistic innovation.

Classical modernism engaged her attention in the early 1930s. She painted at the George Bell school and studied under Rah Fizelle in Sydney; Mary Alice Evatt and Cynthia Reed were her colleagues. For several months in 1937 she took charge of Heide, the home and garden of John and Sunday Reed, at Bulleen, Melbourne. The Reeds were pivotal both to her sympathy for modernism and her belief in congenial fellowship. She enjoyed something of the intense relationship with Sunday Reed that the latter would subsequently extend to Joy Hester. In June Dyring held an exhibition, opened by H. V. Evatt, at the Riddell Gallery, Melbourne. Less enthusiastic than the Reeds and the Evatts about her art, Basil Burdett wrote of her 'somewhat incoherent interpretation of modern ideas', although he did acknowledge that her work had 'audacity of colour and a certain monumental feeling for form . . . qualities rare enough in Australian painting'." Australian Dictionary of Biography

Her introduction to the Reed's came through her boyfriend (later husband) Sam Atyeo. Sam had an affair with Sunday Reed. She went overseas in 1937 and by 1938 was based in Paris where Sam Atyeo had contacts in the avant-garde art scene. In 1939 she and Sam moved to a farm in Vence, near Nice. In 1941 she married Sam. They divorced in 1950.

Moya settled in Paris, returning to Australia for exhibitions in 1950, 1953, 1956, 1960 and 1963. She was supportive of Australian artists visiting Europe. After her death from cancer (January 4, 1967) "An apartment for visiting Australian artists was established in her memory at the Cite Internationale des Arts, Paris."

See also Wikipedia and this abstract of Gaynor Cuthbert's thesis Changing the landscape: the life and art of Moya Dyring

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