Antoine Maurin (Artist) Louis Auguste de Sainson (Related Artist)

Nataï. L'un des chefs de la baie Bream (Nouvelle Zélande) [Nataï. One of the chiefs of Bream Bay]

Nataï. L'un des chefs de la baie Bream (Nouvelle Zélande) [Nataï. One of the chiefs of Bream Bay] by Antoine Maurin, Louis Auguste de Sainson

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Born in Paris, Louis-Auguste de Sainson accompanied Dumont d'Urville on his voyage around the world on board the corvette Astrolabe between 1826 and 1829, producing nearly 500 drawings. Natai, and a related portrait titled Rangui, L'un des Chefs de Shouraki (Nouvelle Zélande) are regarded as outstanding examples of the European concept of 'the noble savage'. This profile portrait shows a sharply handsome, intelligent and alert face, although the hairstyle seems somewhat Napoleonic. De Sainson wrote of his admiration for individual Mäori and for Mäori activities and rejected the negative stereotypes about Mäori that were commonly expressed in France. Leonard Bell describes him as 'a serious, close and sympathetic observer of Mäori culture and society . . . [his] approach was level-headed and empirical. Though not always successful, he attempted to record what he saw. His renderings of ornament and moko look careful and faithful . . . '. The official account of the voyage of the Astrolabe was written by Dumont d'Urville and illustrated with lithographs by Antoine Maurin, made from de Sainson's drawings. Maurin was a painter and lithographer who exhibited at the Paris Salon in 1834 and 1836. His Natai is a fine example of the French pictorial tradition and the contribution it made to New Zealand's art history. (from The Guide, 2001)

Title
Nataï. L'un des chefs de la baie Bream (Nouvelle Zélande) [Nataï. One of the chiefs of Bream Bay]
Artist/creator
Production date
circa 1830
Medium
lithograph
Dimensions
471 x 339 mm
Inscription
de Sainson pinxt J. Tastu Editeur (l.l.) A Maurin Lith Lith A. Bes (l.r.). Voyage de L'Astrolabe (u.l.) Pl. 63 (u.r.) (title - as above) (m.l.).
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1964
Accession no
1964/18/2
Other ID
1964/18/2/B
Copyright
Copying restrictions apply
Department
New Zealand Art
Display status
Not on display

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