Rita Angus exhibition to open at Te Papa in December

Around 70 works by one of New Zealand’s most important 20th-century artists, Rita Angus (1908–1970), will be exhibited at Te Papa in December this year.

As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, the exhibition’s London dates at the Royal Academy of Arts have been cancelled.

Head of Art Charlotte Davy said the cancellation was a difficult decision to be made by the Royal Academy and Te Papa, but was necessary in these extraordinary times.

“We are, of course, looking forward to sharing the works and stories of Rita Angus with the people of Aotearoa New Zealand this summer,” she says.

Iconic works from across Angus’ career such as Rutu, 1951, Cleopatra, 1938, Central Otago, 1953–56/1969, and Cass, 1936, will be on display along with the significant recent acquisition, Marjorie Marshall.

Ms Davy says the exhibition highlights Angus’ huge contemporary relevance.

“The exhibition will draw out the themes of pacifism, feminism, and nature that shaped so much of Angus’ work.”

The exhibition will be accompanied by a full catalogue, Rita Angus: A Survey, featuring all the works in the show and anchored by two major essays by Angus’ biographer Jill Trevelyan and Dr Adrian Locke, Senior Curator at London’s Royal Academy of Arts. Te Papa Press is also publishing a new edition of Trevelyan’s award-winning book, Rita Angus: An Artist’s Life in April.


Media contact

Ellie Campbell, Senior Communications Advisor
029 601 0120