Rita Angus: New Zealand Modernist | He Ringatoi Hou o Aotearoa

By Lizzie Bisley

Publication date: November 2021
NZ RRP (incl. GST): $35.00
Extent: 200 pages
Format: Limpbound
ISBN: 978-0-9951338-4-6

Out of print

The work of seminal, pioneering New Zealand modernist artist Rita Angus returns in triumph to the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa on 18 December 2021, in a major show of more than 100 works from throughout her career.

This extensive catalogue includes all the works in the show and is anchored by a major essay by Angus’s biographer, Jill Trevelyan, which gives deep insight into Angus’s life and practice. Adrian Locke, the Royal Academy, London, curator who was helming the major Angus show there until pandemic intervened, contributes a significant text that puts her work into international context, assessing her alongside contemporary women artist peers such as Anita Malfatti, Amrita Sher-Gil, Irma Stern, Emily Carr, Frida Kahlo, Henrietta Shore and Georgia O’Keeffe.

Short pieces by well-known New Zealanders, including Gaylene Preston, Jennifer Ward-Lealand, Fay Weldon and Robin White, who each examine the force of Angus’s work and its impact on them, complete this rich celebration of Angus’s life.

Look inside here.

Review Highlights

  • Kete Books, reviewed by Peter Simpson. “… an excellent introduction to the artist and her work. It is well-edited, well-produced and excellent value for money.”

  • NZ Arts Review, reviewed by John Daly-Peoples. “The catalogue and exhibition provide an understanding of those times as well as how Angus herself developed as a freethinking individual, pacifist, feminist and artist. The book explores her unique approach to art and the various threads of that work from the landscapes to the portraits.”

About the author

Lizzie Bisley is Curator Modern Art at Te Papa. She studied at Victoria University of Wellington and the Royal College of Art, London, before working as a curator at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum. While at the V&A she curated a number of major exhibitions on modernism and twentieth century design. Her research is focussed on histories of modernity, and she is interested in the close relationships between art, design and architecture in the 20th century.