Gottfried Lindauer’s New Zealand: The Māori Portraits
Ngahiraka Mason and Zara Stanhope
An exquisite piece of art publishing that showcases Bohemian artist Gottfried Lindauer’s New Zealand in 75 plates and detailed contextual essays.
From the 1870s to the early twentieth century, the Bohemian immigrant artist Gottfried Lindauer travelled to marae and rural towns around New Zealand and – commissioned by Māori and Pākehā – captured in paint the images of key Māori figures. For Māori then and now, the faces of tūpuna are full of mana and life. Now this definitive book on Lindauer’s portraits of the ancestors collects that work for New Zealanders.
The book presents 67 major portraits and 8 genre paintings alongside detailed accounts of the subject and work, followed by essays by leading scholars that take us inside Lindauer and his world: from his artistic training in Bohemia to his travels around New Zealand as Māori and Pākehā commissioned him to paint portraits; his artistic techniques and deep relationship with photography; Henry Partridge’s gallery of Lindauer works on Queen Street in Auckland where Māori visited to see their ancestors; and the afterlife of the paintings in marae and memory.
For Māori, the faces that look out from Lindauer’s portraits are tribal leaders and family members. They are tohunga and politicians. They are ancestors and friends. Gottfried Lindauer met Maori tūpuna at the most basic level of human connection by capturing their likeness. This book returns the ancestors and the artist to the people.
Published in association with Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki
Accompanying exhibition The Māori Portraits: Gottfried Lindauer’s New Zealand was on show at Auckland Art Gallery from 22 October 2016 to 19 February 2017.
Read an extract here
Awards and Nominations
Winner – Museums Australia Multimedia & Publication Design Awards 2017 for Exhibition Catalogue (Major) – Gottfried Lindauer’s New Zealand: The Māori Portraits edited by Ngahiraka Mason and Zara Stanhope
It’s a gorgeous book. Superlatives pale – it’s ravishing. - Andrew Paul Wood, NZ Listener
In 2016, the Auckland Art Gallery staged an exhibition of the Māori portraits by Lindauer and commissioned this book to accompany the event. While sometimes such publications are little more than picture books with captions, I was delighted to find this publication an extensive analysis of all aspects of the works. Here we can read the background, the setting, the sitter, the painter, the journey of the completed work and finally the place held by the painting among the people for whom it is taonga. - Kathy Watson, Booksellers NZ
Gottfried Lindauer’s New Zealand: The Maori Portraits is a stunning book. - Lyn Potter, Grown Ups NZ