David’s father, world renowned artist Pro Hart, had a fascination with insects. Pro’s portrayal of insects, the dragonfly in particular, extended from the joyous to the macabre in paintings and sculpture.
Pro Hart grew up in the outback and this influenced his work significantly. David grew up in the home of one of Australia’s most famous artists and one of his greatest influences was his father’s dragonfly paintings.
It was Pro’s fascination that fostered David’s interest in dragonflies and David’s promise to keep his father’s secret techniques and styles alive after his father died. Pro Hart passed away at his home in Broken Hill, New South Wales in March 2006.
Quite often, Pro Hart would set up a video camera in front of his easel and video tape different techniques and styles that he wanted to teach David. Pro would talk to David on camera as he explained what he was doing and the purpose behind certain processes.
Nearly all of the styles and subjects that David paints contain elements of his father’s techniques as David saw them.
David has been left with an incredible heritage and he feels that it’s up to him now to keep it alive. More than that, David sees his challenge is to take his father’s secret techniques to new heights and to push through new boundaries of experimentation and growth as he adapts and integrates them into his own style.
Regardless of the motivation behind the Dragonfly series and the continual evolution of style and technique, they will remain among the most identifiable of David Hart’s work.