Selwyn Wilson

Seated Female Nude (Mary Schofield)

Seated Female Nude (Mary Schofield) by Selwyn Wilson

Artwork Detail

Selwyn Wilson was one of the pioneering artists of the Māori modernism movement in the 1950s and 1960s. Wilson was one of the first Māori students to enrol at Elam School of Fine Arts.


While at Elam, Wilson was mentored by influential artists, John Weeks and Archibald Fisher, who taught him technical skills as well as encouraged him to experiment with form and colour following the tradition of European post-impressionists.

Painted during his training at Elam, this work is a rare example of a nude in Aotearoa New Zealand art history. The subject, Mary Schofield, was a frequent life model at Elam during her own studies. Here, depicted against a darkened background, Mary is sitting nude on a chair, her arm modestly shielding her breasts and her body positioned towards the viewer.

Seated Female Nude (Mary Schofield)
Selwyn Wilson
Production date
oil on board
730 x 452 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 2023
Accession no
Copying restrictions apply
New Zealand Art
Display status
Not on display

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