Posts categorized as Art

Faking Rembrandt: Copies in the collection

Faking Rembrandt: copies in the collection

Copies of prints have never been easier to identify than they are today. More and more museums (including Te Papa) are making high-resolution images of their collections available online, so that we can compare the prints in our collection with their counterparts across the world. This makes it possible even for students like myself (a… Read more »

Ngā Toi Christmas Quiz: The Winner!

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The great Ngā Toi Christmas Quiz has a truly triumphant winner, Vivienne Morrell, of Wellington. She wins a Te Papa voucher, wine and Belgian chocolates, a pretty cool combination. Her set of answers was little short of brilliant: she only struggled with part of one question, which was fiendishly difficult anyway. Congratulations, Vivienne! Now, here’s a question for all of you: would you like more quizzes… Read more »

Barry Brickell (1935-2016)

[Barry Brickell], 1956, Auckland, by Steve Rumsey. Purchased 1998. Te Papa (F.009393)

It is with great sadness that we bid farewell to an extraordinary New Zealander – potter, artist, railway enthusiast, conservationist and a self confessed ‘practical visionary’. Our condolences go to Barry’s family and many friends. Barry was a second generation studio potter, following the pioneering achievements of potters including Len Castle who mentored Barry as a… Read more »

Painting by numbers: creating a colonial masterpiece

William Strutt’s View of Mt Egmont, Taranaki, New Zealand, taken from New Plymouth, with Maoris driving off settlers’ cattle, 1861 has been described by some as the ‘holy grail’ of colonial New Zealand painting. Paintings of this calibre are few and far between in New Zealand’s art history, as budding artists were more often preoccupied… Read more »

Archives – Te Wāhi Pounamu, Areta Wilkinson and Mark Adams

Mark Adams, Land of Memories - The Ngai Tahu Monument, 4 June 1988

Earlier this month, I was invited by the Dunedin Public Art Gallery to travel to Dunedin to talk about Archives – Te Wāhi Pounamu, Areta Wilkinson and Mark Adams currently on at the gallery.  A large exhibition, the show is made up of examples of Areta Wilkinson and Mark Adams individual practices’ across time. It features bodies of work gathered, as the… Read more »

Licking the Old Masters: The First New Zealand Christmas Stamps

nz-stamp-madonna-1962

To quote Bing Crosby, ‘every Christmas card I write’, would be enveloped and stamped unless the friend or relation receiving it was literally ­close. For me and surely millions of others, the stamp itself needed to be a Christmas one. Notice how I use the past tense. In the days of Instagram, Facebook and Twitter,… Read more »

Art at work

Ngā Toi | Arts Te Papa - Behind the Scenes

Do you have that end-of-the-year feeling? Everything compressing and accelerating towards a sense of an ending? I love walking through Te Papa’s art galleries on Level 5, especially at this time of the year. Ngā Toi | Arts Te Papa is an escape from the everyday, from schedules and deadlines into a world where art… Read more »

‘The wild country of my Taihape’: a painting by Douglas MacDiarmid

Painting by Douglas MacDiarmid

One of my favourite paintings in Ngā Toi | Arts Te Papa is a small oil by Douglas MacDiarmid – Papa cliff pool with bathers, Taihape. Whenever I see it, I’m struck by its clarity and intensity. Everything contributes to the sense of dream-like wonder: the emerald-green water, the sensuous curves of the cliffs, and… Read more »