MCCORMACK, Thomas Arthur;

Landscape, Hawke’s Bay

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Watercolour on paper
490 x 640mm (image); 930 x 1035mm (frame)

Inscriptions: T. A. McCORMACK [l.r.]

T. A. McCormack left Aotearoa only once, visiting Australia. However, Chinese and Japanese art was an important influence on his work. Anne Kirker has noted that, in 1937, ‘he paid many visits to the major Chinese Art exhibition at the National Museum [i.e. the Dominion Museum, now the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa] … The four hundred pieces of jade, porcelain and painting confirmed the direction McCormack’s own work was taking. … The emphasis was on aestheticism and spiritual insight. In formal terms, McCormack came to appreciate more fully the power of the brush in Oriental expression and the concentration on essentials.’[1] The ‘essential’ is very much in evidence in this restrained by expressive work believed to date about 1940.


[1] Anne Kirker, ‘T. A. McCormack: A New Talent to Emerge in the Nineteen-Thirties’, Art New Zealand 27 (Winter 1983).

The Fletcher Trust Collection is one of the largest curated private collections of Aotearoa art. The Trust makes works available online as well as via exhibitions initiated by public art institutions and by the Trust itself.

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