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Self-Taught & Visionary Art in New Zealand


Key artists and terms.

(French for wild beasts) a small group of Modern artists that formed in the early twentieth century in France. Members include Henri Matisse and Albert Marquet. The artists was called Les Fauves due to their radical style characterised by simplified lines, exaggerated perspectives and, most notably, vibrant colours.
folk art
folk art works are part of an established tradition of style and craftsmanship, and reflect the culture of a common people. Folk artists typically have had no formal, academic training.
Gauguin, Eugène Henri Paul (1848–1903)
Gauguin was a leading Post-Impressionist painter. His work is characterized by simplified forms and bold colours. Gauguin contributed to the significance of primitivism in modern art.
a style of painting developed in France during the 1870s and characterised by its use of unmixed colours and small strokes to capture a mood and the effect of light and atmosphere.
Kave (goddess figure)
Kave De Hine Aligi was the primary goddess of Nukuoro, a Polynesian outlier in the eastern Caroline Islands. This wooden sculpture dates from the early 19th century and is 220 cm tall. It was brought to New Zealand by an Auckland trader and presented to Auckland Museum in 1878. (Auckland War Memorial Museum 2001, 150 Treasures, ed. Oliver Stead. David Bateman Ltd, Auckland, p. 32.)
a social movement of English textile workers who protested against the mechanisation introduced in the Industrial Revolution.
Picasso, Pablo Ruiz y (1881–1973)
Picasso was a Spanish artist, who worked in France. He is considered to be the foremost figure in 20th century art. His body of work is defined by the phases: the Blue Period, the Rose Period and Cubism.
Preston, Reverend James (1834–1898)
born in England, Preston moved to New Zealand in 1860. Preston’s landscape paintings are a historical record of his experiences. His style is described as naïve and untutored. The Canterbury Museum (New Zealand) holds the largest collection of Preston’s work.
a style inspired by early or tribal cultures, or children’s art.
Rousseau, Henri (1844–1910)
a self-taught Post-Impressionist painter who began painting at the age of 40. His style is described as primitive.
Royal Academy
the Royal Academy is an independent fine arts institution in the United Kingdom that was founded by the architect Sir William Chambers in 1768.