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           Home >  Culture  > Art and Craft  :

Exhibition celebrates 125 years of art at Canterbury
Reprinted from the University of Canterbury's "Chronicle" - 29/11/07

Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu's major summer exhibition is a celebration of 125 years of artistic achievement by the University of Canterbury's School of Fine Arts.

Art School 125, which opened this week, features UC alumni such as Margaret Stoddart, Leo Bensemann, Bill Sutton, Bill Culbert, Boyd Webb, Shane Cotton, Ronnie van Hout and Francis Upritchard.

William Sutton, Dry September, 1949.  Oil on canvas.
William Sutton, Dry September, 1949. Oil on canvas.
Photo Source: Collection of Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu, purchased 1973.

Professor Desmond Rochfort, Head of the School of Fine Arts, says Art School 125 is a unique opportunity to celebrate and reflect on the School's achievements.

"As the oldest school of art in New Zealand it has trained and graduated many of the nation's leading artists and, as a result, has been and continues to be a major source of New Zealand's continually evolving visual cultural identity."

He said the exhibition would give the public and the university community a wonderful chance to see the work of those who have been associated with the school.

"For the School of Fine Arts the exhibition also represents a wonderful opportunity to cement and build relations with one of the leading public art galleries in New Zealand."

Art Gallery Director Jenny Harper says the Gallery is proud to be hosting the exhibition in collaboration with the University.

"The exhibition will examine the School of Fine Arts' artistic and cultural achievements and will feature works in a range of media from paintings, sculpture and film to photography, printmaking, and the earlier decorative arts that were taught at Canterbury."

The exhibition is designed in chapters, such as early pre-modernist era (pre-1930), regionalist painters (c1945 to 1960) and 60s-70s expressionism, each chapter clustering work by style and/or conceptual approach.

Art School 125 is one of a suite of three varied exhibitions over the summer which connects Gallery audiences with the work of both established and emerging artists form Canterbury. The other two are Of Deities or Mortals, featuring works inspired by the University of Canterbury's James Logie Memorial Collection of Greek and Roman antiquities, and Another Destination.

"All three exhibitions are indicative of the Gallery's continuing commitment to promoting artistic endeavour and historical research into art practice in Canterbury," Ms Harper says.

The exhibition runs until 17 February.

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