William Hodges (After), John Sherwin (Lithographer), William Strahan (Publisher)


Tynai-Mai by William Hodges, John Sherwin, William Strahan

Artwork Detail

William Hodges was a late addition to the crew of James Cook’s second voyage to the Pacific. He replaced painter Johann Zoffany, who was to be part of Joseph Banks’s entourage of 13; Banks’s group failed to accompany the voyage as they could not all be accommodated on board ship. Hodges was engaged by the Admiralty as a landscape painter and charged with ‘making Drawings or Paintings of such Places as you may touch at that may be worthy of notice in the course of your Voyage as also of such other Objects and things as may fall within the Compass of his Abilities’ (Joppien and Smith, vol II, p 3). In contrast to his predecessors on Cook’s first voyage, Hodges was not primarily concerned in recording ethnographic detail, rather his interest was in the overall effect.

Tynai-mai or Tainamai was the daughter of Orio, chief of Raiatea, in the Society Islands. She was one of the ‘beauties’ who danced for the crew at Raiatea. George Forster recorded that Hodges had great difficulty making the portrait as ‘her vivacity and restless disposition rendered [it] almost impossible.’ This aspect of their encounter is perhaps captured in the playful way she stares over her shoulder. Her hair is ornamented with tiny white flowers, which Johann Forster reflected ‘looked so pretty as if the head had been set of by pearls’ (J&S, vol II, p 59, 179).

William Hodges, John Sherwin, William Strahan
Production date
228 x 175 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 2010
Accession no
No known copyright restrictions
New Zealand Art
Display status
Not on display

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