Romancing the Collection

Romancing the Collection

Exhibition Details

Romancing the Collection, offers a love letter to the city’s public art collection, providing a deep dive to present much-loved favourites alongside artworks that – perhaps – have been previously overlooked and under-loved.

Blending the historical with the contemporary, the exhibition traverses time to show just how tastes have changed in the decades through which Auckland's art collection has grown.

From portraits to pop art and even a Picasso, Romancing the Collection delves into portraiture, romance, vistas, animalia, still life and abstract works. It opens with the remarkable Māori portraits painted in oils by 19th-century artists, Gottfried Lindauer and Charles F Goldie, and includes the work of other leading portraitists, Allan Ramsay, Joshua Reynolds and Henry Raeburn.

Romancing the Collection explores all the complexities of love from first flirtation to unrequited and fickle love, and even hidden desires. As styles and sensibilities shift, the exhibition demonstrates how frivolities give way to formalisms. 

Spirited and playful, Romancing the Collection cleverly pairs historical pieces with contemporary art. Opening on Saturday 7 August, entry is free.

Download more information on the artworks displayed within the exhibition here:

Romancing the Collection - Portraiture 

Romancing the Collection - Still Life

Romancing the Collection - Love

Romancing the Collection - Animalia

Romancing the Collection - Animalia Māori

Romancing the Collection - Lakes and Land

Romancing the Collection - Lakes and Land Māori

Romancing the Collection - Ocean Arrivals

Romancing the Collection - Ocean Arrivals Māori

Image credit:

Marcus Stone, Her First Love Letter, 1889, oil on canvas. Auckland Art Gallery, gift of Moss Davis, 1930

Curated by
Juliana Engberg
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki