E. Mervyn Taylor

Aotearoa New Zealand, b.1906, d.1964

Ruru (Morepork)

  • 1943
  • Wood engraving
  • Purchased 2022
  • 126 x 106mm
  • 2022/069

Aotearoa’s best-known and respected printmaker working during the twentieth century, Mervyn Taylor produced at least 239 wood-engravings over the course of his career, and many more linocuts as well. He initially worked as a jeweller, for which his training included engraving. Unlike his contemporaries who trained at art schools throughout the country and abroad, Mervyn was self-taught. His prints focused on subjects that were unique to Aotearoa at a time when a national identity was at the forefront of Pākehā art, including elements from Māori culture as well as landscapes and native flora and fauna. His wood-engravings remain popular and are highly sought after.

Ink on Paper: Aotearoa New Zealand Printmakers of the Modern Era, 11 February – 28 May 2023