Seeking Modernity

Seeking Modernity
John Tunnard
Focal Point 1943
Mackelvie Trust Collection
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki
purchased 1991

Exhibition Details

Seeking Modernity features examples of European modern art by international artists including Henry Moore, Barbara Hepworth and Roderick O'Conor, as well key works by New Zealand expatriates Frances Hodgkins and Francis McCracken.

The period from 1860 to 1960 was a time of profound transformation in the world of art, with the emergence of avant-garde groups eager to explore different approaches to colour, form, composition and art materials. The light-filled delicacy of Impressionism looked demure against the bold colours and dynamic brushstrokes of the Fauves and Post-Impressionists, and the fractured world of the Cubists.

Revolutionary approaches to landscape painting emerged, led by Édouard Manet, Claude Monet and the Impressionists who now painted en plein air (out of doors) using new portable tubes of paint. As well as studying the effects of light, modernists captured ordinary working people going about their daily lives, whether serving in a bar, or picking potatoes in a field.

For much of the period, Paris remained the dynamic and creative hub of modernism. Artists, writers and musicians flocked to the French capital, determined to be a part of this creative revolution. Among them were a number of New Zealanders who made Europe their home. Others only stayed briefly before returning to New Zealand, where they startled the more conservative critics with their determinedly modernist approach to art.

Includes works by Alexander Archipenko, Maurice Denis, Jacob Epstein, Robert N. Field, Henri Gaudier-Brzeska, Duncan Grant, Rhona Haszard, Barbara Hepworth, Aristide Maillol, Henry Moore, Ben Nicholson, John Weeks and others.

Date
Curated by
Mary Kisler
Location
Level 1
Cost
Free entry

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Tree of Knowledge
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Eileen Agar

Production date
1938
Medium
mixed media on copper and plywood
Size (h x w)
725 x 510 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, on loan from the Thanksgiving Foundation
Accession no
L2011/2
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Still Life with Guitar, Bottle of Bass and Fruit
Still Life with Guitar, Bottle of Bass and Fruit

Henri Hayden

Production date
1918
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
813 x 533 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1958
Accession no
1958/1
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Shell-Fish, Zither and Ace of Hearts
Shell-Fish, Zither and Ace of Hearts

Louis Marcoussis

Production date
1928
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
654 x 997 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1966
Accession no
1966/1
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Landscape of Bleached Objects
Landscape of Bleached Objects

Paul Nash

Production date
circa 1934
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
620 x 747 mm
Credit line
Mackelvie Trust Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1994
Accession no
M1994/7
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1939 (composition)
1939 (composition)

Ben Nicholson

Production date
1939
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
560 x 711 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, on loan from the Thanksgiving Foundation
Accession no
L2008/5
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Focal point
Focal point

John Tunnard

Production date
1943
Medium
oil on board
Size (h x w)
1250 x 1560 mm
Credit line
Mackelvie Trust Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1991
Accession no
M1991/31
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Tribute II
Tribute II

Elisabeth Frink

Production date
1977
Medium
bronze
Size (h x w)
820 x 700 x 400 mm
Credit line
Mackelvie Trust Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased with assistance from the Molly Morpeth Canaday Trust, 2001
Accession no
M2001/38
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Abstract with a bottle
Abstract with a bottle

Patrick Hayman

Production date
1943
Medium
oil on board
Size (h x w)
381 x 375 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Colin McCahon
Accession no
U/23/2
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Orange Bush
Orange Bush

Ivon Hitchens

Production date
1955
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
505 x 1045 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, bequest of Mr Alfred Douglas George Glass, 1979
Accession no
1979/17
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The Steamer
The Steamer

Alfred Wallis

Production date
circa 1930
Medium
ships oil paint on cardboard (?)
Size (h x w)
565 x 444 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Lucy Carrington Wertheim, 1948
Accession no
1948/7/41
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The Sloop Inn, St Ives
The Sloop Inn, St Ives

Christopher Wood

Production date
1926
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
635 x 762 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Lucy Carrington Wertheim, 1948
Accession no
1948/7/42
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White peonies and red fish
White peonies and red fish

Matthew Smith

Production date
1950
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
1470 x 826 mm
Credit line
Mackelvie Trust Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1965
Accession no
M1965/1
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Study for a family group
Study for a family group

Henry Moore

Production date
1945
Medium
bronze
Size (h x w)
165 mm
Credit line
Mackelvie Trust Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki purchased 1948
Accession no
M1948/5
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Head of a Girl
Head of a Girl

Henry Moore

Production date
1923
Medium
bronze
Size (h x w)
171 x 115 x 124 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1956
Accession no
1956/23/1
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Self Portrait: Still Life
Self Portrait: Still Life

Frances Hodgkins

Production date
circa 1935
Medium
oil on cardboard
Size (h x w)
970 x 840 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1963
Accession no
1963/11/2
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Royal Albion
Royal Albion

Suzanne Cooper

Production date
1936
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
625 x 725 x 50 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Lucy Carrington Wertheim, 1948
Accession no
1948/7/9
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Not on display

The Well at Mydlow, Poland
The Well at Mydlow, Poland

Robert Bevan

Production date
1909
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
603 x 80 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1961
Accession no
1961/9
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Torse noir assis
Torse noir assis

Alexander Archipenko

Production date
1909
Medium
bronze
Size (h x w)
375 mm
Credit line
Mackelvie Trust Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1948
Accession no
M1948/1
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Le Port du Pecq (The Port of Pecq)
Le Port du Pecq (The Port of Pecq)

Maurice Denis

Production date
1896
Medium
oil on board
Size (h x w)
477 x 640 x 52 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1963
Accession no
1963/19
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Idiot: Self Portrait
Idiot: Self Portrait

Henri Gaudier-Brzeska

Production date
1912
Medium
bronze
Size (h x w)
178 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1956
Accession no
1956/33
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Not on display

Valentine Dobrée
Valentine Dobrée

Mark Gertler

Production date
1919
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
991 x 864 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of the Contemporary Art Society, London, 1964
Accession no
1964/3
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Not on display

Lake In The Hills
Lake In The Hills

Harold Gilman

Production date
Unknown
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
552 x 666 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of the Contemporary Arts Society, London, 1968
Accession no
1968/32
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Not on display

Vanessa Bell Pregnant
Vanessa Bell Pregnant

Duncan Grant

Production date
1918
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
660 x 583 mm
Credit line
Mackelvie Trust Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased with the assistance of the National Art Collection Fund, 1992. Frame sponsored by the Portrait Group.
Accession no
M1992/26
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Not on display

Seascape
Seascape

Armand Guillaumin

Production date
Unknown
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
543 x 652 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1959
Accession no
1959/17/1
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The Woman who walks through the water
The Woman who walks through the water

Aristide Maillol

Production date
1910
Medium
bronze
Size (h x w)
1206 x 380 x 500 mm
Credit line
Mackelvie Trust Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1957
Accession no
M1957/1
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La ferme (The Farm)
La ferme (The Farm)

Roderic O'Conor

Production date
circa 1892
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
489 x 609 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1958
Accession no
1958/13
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Pastorale
Pastorale

Frances Hodgkins

Production date
circa 1929-circa 1930
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
960 x 835 x 85 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1982
Accession no
1982/46/4
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Not on display

Roses in a Jar
Roses in a Jar

David Gommon

Production date
Unknown
Medium
oil on board
Size (h x w)
609 x 457 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Lucy Carrington Wertheim, 1948
Accession no
1948/7/23
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Not on display

Man and Horse V
Man and Horse V

Elisabeth Frink

Production date
1971
Medium
lithograph
Size (h x w)
590 x 787 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of the Institute of Contemporary Prints, 1976
Accession no
1976/57/19/1
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Not on display

Man and Horse VI
Man and Horse VI

Elisabeth Frink

Production date
1971
Medium
lithograph
Size (h x w)
590 x 794 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of the Institute of Contemporary Prints, 1976
Accession no
1976/57/19/2
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Not on display

Le Venetien
Le Venetien

Jean Lurçat

Production date
1940s
Medium
tapestry
Size (h x w)
2133 x 2387 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of the New Zealand Government, 1964
Accession no
1964/10
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On display

Tennis In Mornington Crescent Gardens
Tennis In Mornington Crescent Gardens

Spencer Frederick Gore

On display

Production date
1910
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
670 x 771 x 55 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1955. Frame sponsored by the Portrait Group.
Accession no
1955/1
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Not on display

Ibiza
Ibiza

Frances Hodgkins

Production date
1932-1933
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
820 x 950 x 95 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1982
Accession no
1982/46/3
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Not on display

Ian (Ossian)
Ian (Ossian)

Jacob Epstein

Production date
1942
Medium
bronze
Size (h x w)
406 mm
Credit line
Mackelvie Trust Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki
Accession no
M1948/3
View Artwork

Not on display

Gondolier
Gondolier

Alexander Archipenko

Production date
1914
Medium
bronze
Size (h x w)
838 mm
Credit line
Mackelvie Trust Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1964
Accession no
M1964/1
View Artwork

Not on display

Torso II (Torcello)
Torso II (Torcello)

Barbara Hepworth

Production date
1958
Medium
bronze
Size (h x w)
900 x 520 x 150 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of George Wooller, 1963
Accession no
1963/17
View Artwork

Not on display

Ouvrier avec un Piquet (Peasant at Work)
Ouvrier avec un Piquet (Peasant at Work)

Henri Martin

Production date
Unknown
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
597 x 749 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1959
Accession no
1959/18
View Artwork

Not on display

Epworth Farm
Epworth Farm

Robert N Field

Production date
circa 1928
Medium
oil on board
Size (h x w)
330 x 378 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1980
Accession no
1980/40/7
View Artwork

Not on display

The Marne Valley
The Marne Valley

Rhona Haszard

Production date
circa 1927
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
587 x 682 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1929
Accession no
1929/5/2
View Artwork

Not on display

Edinburgh
Edinburgh

Francis McCracken

Production date
Unknown
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
1029 x 1270 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1961
Accession no
1961/28/2
View Artwork

Not on display

Harmony in Blue
Harmony in Blue

Francis McCracken

Production date
1937
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
1276 x 1022 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1961
Accession no
1961/28/1
View Artwork

Not on display

Tourette-sur-Loup, South of France
Tourette-sur-Loup, South of France

Sydney Lough Thompson

Production date
1938
Medium
gouache
Size (h x w)
390 x 570 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1939
Accession no
1939/11
View Artwork

Not on display

Moroccan Rooftops
Moroccan Rooftops

John Weeks

Production date
circa 1927
Medium
pastel
Size (h x w)
238 x 317 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased with the aid of a grant from the Queen Elizabeth II Arts Council of New Zealand, 1970
Accession no
1970/1/8
View Artwork

Not on display

Portrait of a Woman
Portrait of a Woman

Ethel Walker

Production date
Unknown
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
609 x 508 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Mr Eric Westbrook, 1954
Accession no
1954/42
View Artwork

Not on display

Bridesmaids
Bridesmaids

Frances Hodgkins

Production date
1930
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
965 x 822 x 75 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Lucy Carrington Wertheim, 1948
Accession no
1948/7/28
View Artwork

Not on display

Berries and Laurel
Berries and Laurel

Frances Hodgkins

Production date
circa 1930
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
828 x 955 x 100 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased with funds from the William James Jobson Trust, 1982
Accession no
1982/46/2
View Artwork

Not on display

Dura Lex Sed Lex (The Law is Hard, but it is the Law)
Dura Lex Sed Lex (The Law is Hard, but it is the Law)

Georges Rouault

Production date
1948
Medium
engraving, aquatint
Size (h x w)
571 x 431 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1958
Accession no
1958/5/1
View Artwork

Not on display

Qui Ne Se Grime Pas (Who Does Not Wear a Mask?)
Qui Ne Se Grime Pas (Who Does Not Wear a Mask?)

Georges Rouault

Production date
1948
Medium
aquatint, drypoint and etching
Size (h x w)
565 x 428 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1958
Accession no
1958/5/2
View Artwork

Not on display

Pink and Blue
Pink and Blue

Enid Martin

Production date
Unknown
Medium
linocut
Size (h x w)
247 x 292 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Rex Nan Kivell, 1953
Accession no
1953/2/175
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Not on display

Jug and Fruit
Jug and Fruit

Ronald Grierson

Production date
Unknown
Medium
linocut
Size (h x w)
318 x 269 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Rex Nan Kivell, 1953
Accession no
1953/2/125
View Artwork

Not on display

At rest
At rest

Sydney Lough Thompson

Production date
1924
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
540 x 647 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1924
Accession no
1924/2/2
View Artwork

Not on display

Danseuse Couchée
Danseuse Couchée

Henri Matisse

Production date
1927
Medium
lithograph
Size (h x w)
267 x 457 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1961
Accession no
1961/16/3
View Artwork

Not on display

La grande liseuse (Large Reader)
La grande liseuse (Large Reader)

Henri Matisse

Production date
1923
Medium
lithograph
Size (h x w)
495 x 393 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1956
Accession no
1956/15/12
View Artwork

Not on display

Deux Femmes Nues Dans un Arbre
Deux Femmes Nues Dans un Arbre

Pablo Picasso

Production date
1931
Medium
etching
Size (h x w)
365 x 287 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1958
Accession no
1958/14/2
View Artwork

Not on display

Tête de Vieille Bretonne (Marie)
Tête de Vieille Bretonne (Marie)

Margaret Butler

Production date
1926
Medium
bronze
Size (h x w)
330 x 150 x 180 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Margaret Mary Butler in memory of the artist, 2011
Accession no
2011/9
View Artwork

Not on display

Peasant woman and child
Peasant woman and child

Emile-Antoine Bourdelle

Production date
1919
Medium
bronze
Size (h x w)
520 mm
Credit line
Mackelvie Trust Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki
Accession no
M1948/4
View Artwork

Not on display

Il grande lottatore (The Large wrestler)
Il grande lottatore (The Large wrestler)

Emilio Greco

Production date
1947
Medium
bronze
Size (h x w)
901 mm
Credit line
Mackelvie Trust Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1962
Accession no
M1962/1
View Artwork

Not on display

Lancashire Family
Lancashire Family

Frances Hodgkins

Production date
1927
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
830 x 847 x 85 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1963
Accession no
1963/11/1
View Artwork

Not on display

Mask of Mrs Epstein
Mask of Mrs Epstein

Jacob Epstein

Production date
1916
Medium
bronze
Size (h x w)
241 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1961
Accession no
1961/30
View Artwork

Not on display

Corrida One
Corrida One

Elisabeth Frink

Production date
1973
Medium
lithograph
Size (h x w)
571 x 775 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of the Institute of Contemporary Prints, 1976
Accession no
1976/57/20
View Artwork

Not on display

Bull Fighter, Spain
Bull Fighter, Spain

John Minton

Production date
Unknown
Medium
colour lithograph
Size (h x w)
470 x 508 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Rex Nan Kivell, 1953
Accession no
1953/2/25
View Artwork

Not on display

Sea Holly No. 1
Sea Holly No. 1

Eileen Mayo

Production date
circa 1949
Medium
tempera on board
Size (h x w)
600 x 520 x 52 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, The Ilene and Laurence Dakin Bequest, purchased 2014
Accession no
2014/19
View Artwork

Not on display

Portrait of Frances Hodgkins
Portrait of Frances Hodgkins

Cedric Morris

Production date
1928
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
985 x 864 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased with funds from the William James Jobson Trust, 1954
Accession no
1954/5
View Artwork

Not on display

Spanish Shrine
Spanish Shrine

Frances Hodgkins

Production date
1933-1935
Medium
oil on canvas
Size (h x w)
965 x 1236 x 80 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1954
Accession no
1954/8
View Artwork

Not on display

Marrakech
Marrakech

John Weeks

Production date
circa 1927
Medium
pastel
Size (h x w)
241 x 317 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased with the aid of a grant from the Queen Elizabeth II Arts Council of New Zealand, 1970
Accession no
1970/1/9