Illingworth, Michael
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A legendary figure in New Zealand’s contemporary art history, Michael Illingworth was foremost a courageous and uncompromising artist - and the relentless scourge of conservative 1960’s Auckland society.

Born in England in 1932, Illingworth studied textile design after leaving school. Aged 20 he travelled to New Zealand where he worked and painted throughout the country until he returned to England in 1957. There, he spent five years painting, visiting galleries and working in a London dealer-gallery. A love of New Zealand and a spiritual attachment to the land brought Illingworth back to New Zealand in 1961, where he worked as a full-time painter and farmer. In 1966, Illingworth was a recipient of the first Frances Hodgkins Fellowship from the University of Otago.

Like so many of Illingworth’s paintings Tawera presents a stylized person in a vivid landscape. As the artist said of this kind of figure it is “waving [to] signify two things, the feeling of a lost quality – what am I doing here? Where do I belong? – and the feeling of a possibility, an idea that may become something but is certainly nothing at the moment.”
Silkscreen print, 8 colours
Print hxw; 440 x 564mm
Frame hxwxd; 710 x 823 x 35mm.
Breadth 35mm.
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