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Waikato Museum acquires spectacular paintings by Maaori artist

Pah Paintings 1 – 4 by Star Gossage
The series "Pah Paintings 1–4" by Star Gossage will has its home in the public collection of Waikato Museum

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A series of spectacular paintings by one of New Zealand’s leading Maaori artists has been acquired by Waikato Museum Te Whare Taonga o Waikato thanks to support from Trust Waikato.

Waikato Museum has purchased Pah Paintings 1 – 4 by Star Gossage (Ngaati Wai, Ngaati Ruanui), a vibrant artwork consisting of four oil paintings each measuring 2.7 metres high and 1 metre wide.

Born in Ootorohanga in 1973 and now based in Paakiri, Gossage has risen to prominence with emotional and evocative paintings which emerge from her waahine-based, female-centred world.

Gossage’s use of portrait and figure in the landscape weaves together European art traditions of expressionism and impressionism with the view that people are bound by wairua, whenua, whakapapa and whaanau - spirit, land, ancestry and family.

Her work is held in several private and public collections including at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki, Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, James Wallace Arts Trust, and University of Auckland.

The work, Pah Paintings 1 – 4, created in 2015, was purchased with funding from a strategic partnership between Waikato Museum and Trust Waikato.

Liz Cotton, Director of Museum and Arts, thanks Trust Waikato for their ongoing support of key collection acquisitions which assists Waikato Museum to continue to delight and inspire their visitors through art and culture.

“This purchase, for the benefit of Hamilton with no cost to ratepayers, would have been impossible without the generosity of Trust Waikato.”

“The work is a stunning example of Star Gossage’s mastery of technique and content, and will significantly enhance the Museum’s collection. It’s wonderful opportunity to reiterate our commitment to elevating the artistic practice of Maaori women – and women in general – within the collection.”

Dennis Turton, Chief Executive at Trust Waikato said:

“It is really special to have these paintings find their home here in the Waikato. We are excited that a locally-born Maaori artist’s work has been added to enrich the collection and are pleased that Trust Waikato’s funding helps enable such artworks to stay in the region to be enjoyed by all.”

The Trust generously donated its art and taonga collection to Hamilton in 2015 and the strategic partnership provides funding to grow the collection and keep or bring significant artworks to the region.

The acquisition of Pah Paintings 1 – 4 was also assisted by the generosity of Star Gossage’s gallerist, Tim Melville (Te Arawa, Ngaati Whakaue, Te Atiawa) from Tim Melville Gallery in Auckland. Fulfilling Gossage’s intention for the four paintings to be kept together, Melville worked to ensure they were acquired by a public institution.

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Waikato Museum - Te Whare Taonga o Waikato

19 Jul 2022

For an inspirational experience, visit us on the banks of the Waikato River in the heart of Hamilton's cultural precinct. Our exhibitions and activities tell the stories of this region and include visual art, social history, tangata whenua and science.