Taranaki by Christopher Perkins

Taranaki by Christopher Perkins

Taranaki, 1931, by Christopher Perkins.

Christopher Perkins’ (1891–1968) Taranaki was highly influential in the development of the regional style in New Zealand painting that was dominant from the 1930s to the 1950s. Perkins placed a dairy factory, which he saw as a sign of progress, in front of a sharply stylised mountain. The work was based on the hard-edged style being practised in Britain and Canada at the time.

In advocating a distinctly New Zealand school of painting, Perkins was passionate about three things: the use of New Zealand's ‘marvellous light’ to portray local conditions and sharp landforms; the use of local subjects and regionalist icons with symbolic meaning; and avoiding the use of European examples.

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