‘Rich and interesting’ was how Tony Mackle, art historian, described his research into Frances Hodgkins’ formative years, and ‘rich and interesting’ was his address to the Friends of Te Papa in early July.

Tony illustrated his talk with images of Frances’ paintings from her early years, 1886 -1901, contrasting them with images from her later years, showing how the seeds of her work which she developed in her early years in Dunedin and Wellington, were clearly visible in her later work, particularly in the development of her use of shape, abstract patterns and colour. Tony drew attention to the context of 19th century art and artists and showed how they influenced Frances’ work (and also the work of her artistic family members).

Tony’s research on Frances Hodgkins’ formative years will be a contribution to the online catalogue raisonné; a listing of all known artworks by Hodgkins. Launching later in 2017, this online resource will provide the most comprehensive information and the latest research on Hodgkins to date, as well as images of the painter and her works sourced from around the world.

Feature image: Art Historian Tony Mackle with an early watercolour by Frances Hodgkins, Maori woman and child 1900.
Te Papa 1936-0012-62