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ALBRECHT, Gretchen
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Gretchen Albrecht trained at the University of Auckland’s Elam School of Fine Arts, graduating with a Diploma (Honours) in Painting in 1964. (She would go on to be Teaching Fellow in Painting at the School from 1972 to 1973.) Her student work attracted the attention of visiting American art historians Kurt von Meier and Arthur Lawrence. They encouraged her to look beyond Aotearoa at the full range of international art rather than concern herself with local identity or provincial traditions. Her first solo exhibition was at the Ikon Gallery in 1964. At this time, her painting was largely figurative, showing an expressionist handling of form and colour.

During the 1960s, Albrecht increasingly embraced abstraction. A turning point came in 1970, when she began using acrylic paints, staining her canvases to create images of great intensity. Her work since then has depended on the manipulation of colour rather than drawing for its impact. She is particularly well-known for her works in the form of hemispheres, like Orchard (For Keats), and ellipses, like Nocturne (A Measure of Time).

Aotearoa New Zealand;
Date of birth
07 May 1943
Place of birth
Onehunga, Tāmaki Makaurau, Aotearoa,