Rita Angus

Aotearoa New Zealand, b.1908, d.1970

Mountains, Cass

  • Presented by Robert Erwin in memory of Lawrence Baigent, 1985
  • Reproduced courtesy of the Estate of Rita Angus
  • Watercolour
  • 502 x 626mm
  • 85/21
  • 1936
  • View on google maps

“I was glad to see this painting again for a few minutes. […] I was ‘knocked out’ by the clear admission of truth. I am amazed that at one time (years ago), and in about three to four hours, I had the power & courage to paint Cass.”

—Rita Angus

In the vast emptiness, 8 January - 21 August 2016

earlier labels about this work
  • Cass is 116 kilometres north-west of Christchurch, a small unpopulated place where travellers passed in trains or stopped off briefly in transit. Rita Angus has caught this sense of isolation with a small, solitary hut in a state of disrepair set against dominating landforms. Angus has a unique style of realism that uses clearly defined shapes, blocks of strong colour and a clear, pervading light. She always searched for ways in which her own experience of an area and its essential nature could be combined in her painting. Angus was born in Hastings. In 1927 she began studies at the Canterbury College School of Art until 1933. She then worked as an illustrator for the Christchurch Press Junior. By 1955 she had settled in Wellington and in 1958 was awarded an Association of New Zealand Art Societies Fellowship, which allowed her to travel to England and Europe. There she studied old masters as well as contemporary art. She died in Wellington. (Label date unknown)