Exhibition

Pressed Letters: Fine Printing in New Zealand Since 1975

30 August – 11 October 2012

An exhibition presenting some of the finest examples of letterpress printing produced in New Zealand from 1975 to the present.

During the 1970s traditional techniques of letterpress printing were replaced with modern digital technologies. However, many printers worldwide have continued to use 'obsolete' methods of printing, establishing private presses and producing high-quality, hand-made books. This exhibition highlights the collaborative ethic that often exists between poets, artists and printers. Featuring titles from Joanna Margaret Paul, Ian Wedde, Bill Manhire, Ralph Hotere, Jenny Bornholdt, Alan Loney, Max Gimblett, Leo Bensemann, Bill Sutton, Michelle Leggot, Gretchen Albrecht, Gregory O'Brien, Tara McLeod and Brendan O'Brien.

Related

Exhibition
Face Books

Face Books

Portraits in books from the Christchurch Art Gallery Library collection.

Exhibition
Leo Bensemann: A Fantastic Art Venture

Leo Bensemann: A Fantastic Art Venture

A comprehensive retrospective of the influential Canterbury artist and designer Leo Bensemann, who was at the centre of a dynamic revival in New Zealand art in the mid-twentieth century.

Exhibition
Subjects to hand: JOANNA MARGARET PAUL DRAWING

Subjects to hand: JOANNA MARGARET PAUL DRAWING

Subjects to hand: JOANNA MARGARET PAUL DRAWING, examines in depth the artist's drawings, her exquisite graphic touch and ardent observation of the visual world.

Exhibition
Alan Loney: Poet and Printer

Alan Loney: Poet and Printer

A selection of books by Alan Loney, one of the foremost printers of hand-crafted books in Australasia. Includes finely printed examples of his work from Hawk Press, Blacklight Press, Holloway Press and Electio Editions.

Notes
Heavy Metal #3

Heavy Metal #3

Check out this amazing Columbian printing press that was recently discovered in an English garden.

Notes
Fernbank Studio

Fernbank Studio

While currently curating an exhibition titled Pressed Letters: Fine Printing in New Zealand since 1975, which examines not only beautifully designed hand-printed books but also the collaborative nature that often exists between poets, artists and letterpress printers, I was...

Notes
Enlightenment

Enlightenment

Recent research has illuminated a fragment of medieval manuscript

Notes
High drama

High drama

Portraits of former Chief Justices of New Zealand hang in the No 1 courtroom at the Wellington High Court.

Notes
One way traffic

One way traffic

Madras Street is open again! And we're very pleased about that, as the front door to our Outer Spaces gallery upstairs at NG happens to be on the one-way heading north, so it's even easier for you to get there and see Breathing Space.

Notes
Leo Bensemann's centenary

Leo Bensemann's centenary

Today is the centenary of the birth of Canterbury artist Leo Bensemann and Peter Simpson, Leo's biographer, has contributed an insightful article on the Christchurch Art Gallery's collection of Leo Bensmann's work which you can read here

Notes
William McAloon

William McAloon

It was with much sadness that we heard of William McAloon's death last week.

Notes
40 Years of Leo Bensemann

40 Years of Leo Bensemann

A wonderful collection of paintings by Leo Bensemann opened in Christchurch last night at W.T. MacAlister Gallery.

Notes
Books, Beautiful Books

Books, Beautiful Books

If any of our blog readers are in Melbourne over the next month or two we recommend a visit to the excellent exhibition Art and Adventure: the Fine Press Book from 1450 to 2011 which opened at the University of Melbourne's Baillieu Library last week and runs through to May.

Notes
In memory of David Cheer 1931–2012

In memory of David Cheer 1931–2012

'Still, but never static' is how one writer described the work of local artist David Cheer, who died on 4 February, aged 80.

Notes
Huntsbury Press

Huntsbury Press

The Gallery was very fortunate to receive a collection of books from Leo Bensemann's library this week.

Notes
Wharariki Dreaming

Wharariki Dreaming

Located at the top of the South Island's West Coast, near Cape Farewell, Wharariki Beach is a stunning area where the land meets the sea in dramatic fashion.

Notes
Another nor’wester descends on Canterbury

Another nor’wester descends on Canterbury

Some people fear them, others revel in the unforgiving dry heat – love them or hate them the legendary Canterbury nor'wester is one of the defining features of this region in the summer months and there is a real doozy blowing outside at the moment.

Notes
A tour of someone else's collection

A tour of someone else's collection

Working in an art gallery, I have been lucky enough to have art readily available to enjoy as part of my everyday work life. Unfortunately, with the Gallery doors closed and the collection safety stored away, it's not the case for us at the moment. So it was time to view someone else's collection, and see how it enriches their working environment.

Notes
Earthquakes and Ducklings

Earthquakes and Ducklings

Is it sheer, poetic coincidence that the number of the latest Landfall journal is 222?

Notes
Black Painting

Black Painting

Ralph Hotere's recognition as a Member of the Order of New Zealand in the New Year was a fitting tribute to an artist whose work has truly reflected social, political and environmental issues relating to New Zealand and the wider international community throughout his career.

Notes
Ralph Hotere ONZ

Ralph Hotere ONZ

Notes
Pressed Letters

Pressed Letters

Two recent additions to the Gallery's library highlight letterpress printing is alive and well in Australasia.

Notes
Lawrence Baigent and Robert Erwin

Lawrence Baigent and Robert Erwin

While much has been written about the wrecked buildings in Christchurch's cbd and the loss of some of the city's iconic heritage buildings, demolition work also continues in the suburbs, often on a more personal scale.

Notes
Muka Studio

Muka Studio

Muka Studio, Auckland's renowned lithographic workshop, closed on 3o September this year after operating for the past 25 years.

Notes
Painting free

Painting free

School groups in Christchurch have been learning about abstract art as part of the Gallery's outreach programme.

Notes
Heart in the high country: Austen Deans (1915 - 2011)

Heart in the high country: Austen Deans (1915 - 2011)

For Austen Deans, OBE, painting was an expression of his love of the outdoors and, in particular, the Canterbury high country.

Notes
Meeting Douglas MacDiarmid

Meeting Douglas MacDiarmid

When I visited Paris after the Biennale, I enjoyed a memorable evening with New Zealand painter and long-time Paris resident, Douglas MacDiarmid. The Gallery bought a small work of his from the estate of Albion Wright about a year ago for the Norman Barrett bequest collection. They all knew each other, so it was apt.

Notes
Max Gimblett on show in Pittsburgh

Max Gimblett on show in Pittsburgh

New York-based New Zealand artist Max Gimblett has a new exhibition at the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, US. The Sound of One Hand opened on 17 September, and it would have been nice to be there.

Notes
Chocker

Chocker

In the first few published critical responses, there's been a bit of talk about how much art has been packed into the impressive spaces of the new Auckland Art Gallery.

Notes
‘Oceania’ x 2 in Wellington

‘Oceania’ x 2 in Wellington

I was pleased to see both components of Oceania in Wellington on the opening weekend. A great idea for City Gallery and Te Papa to mount connected exhibitions, effectively two distinct components of one show, and to market these together. It's an effective and rewarding combo for all those international visitors coming to the city over the next month or two.

Notes
What to call your gallery

What to call your gallery

Are art dealers egomaniacs, or can they just not lay their hands on a decent dictionary?

Notes
KO WAI KOE?

KO WAI KOE?

On this day in 1987, the Maori Language Act came into force, making te reo Māori an official language of New Zealand.

Notes
Just because...

Just because...

Obviously, there doesn't really need to be a reason for putting up an image as dazzling as this, but: today is National Poetry Day. 

Notes
Icons

Icons

Congratulations...

Notes
The next best thing

The next best thing

We had three great exhibitions on display in February. De-Building, Van der Velden: Otira and Leo Bensemann: A Fantastic Art Venture all opened within three weeks of the earthquake, and all three had their runs cut very short.

Notes
Light work

Light work

With Leo Bensemann: A Fantastic Art Venture set to open at the Gallery in February, I've been working on Bensemann's St Olaf to get it ready for exhibition.

Notes
Trans Tasman

Trans Tasman

In 2008 I was employed as an Art and Object Handler at the National Maritime Museum and Royal Observatory, in Greenwich, London. About halfway through my year working there I was sent on a course which focussed on the safe handling and movement of oversized, heavy sculptures. The course involved workshops, lectures, and a very interesting array of people from galleries and museums throughout the UK, and was held at West Dean College, which stretches over 10kms along the Sussex South Downs and Lavant Valley in Chichester, South East England.

Notes
The Watercolour Collection

The Watercolour Collection

The Gallery's Watercolour Collection had modest beginnings, but over the past 70 years it has grown steadily by gift and purchase and, of all the Collections, still maintains a largely traditional emphasis. When the Gallery opened in June 1932, just 28 of the 128 paintings on display were watercolours and, of these, 11 were by British artists and 17 by New Zealanders. Among the mostly nineteenth century British watercolours were those by Helen Allingham, Edgar Bundy, Matthew Hale, Laura Knight, William Lee Hankey and Ernest Waterlow. In contrast, the New Zealand watercolours were by mostly contemporary or early twentieth century artists and included works by James Cook, Olivia Spencer Bower, Margaret Stoddart, Maude Sherwood, Eleanor Hughes and Alfred Walsh. The foundation Watercolour Collection included two paintings of larger than usual dimensions. William Lee Hankey's We've been in the Meadows all day (1184 x 878mm) and Charles N. Worsley's Mount Sefton (996 x 1105mm) are still greater in scale than any other work in the Watercolour Collection.

Notes
Untitled (Hop Kilns, Motueka) by Rita Angus

Untitled (Hop Kilns, Motueka) by Rita Angus

This article first appeared in The Press on 28 December 2005

"Malt is the soul of beer and yeast gives it life but the kiss of the hop is the vitality of that life." Tom Inglis

Nelson has long held a strong reputation for growing excellent hops with a substantial industry based on the crop being developed in the region in the late 19th century. Motueka in particular has an extremely suitable climate for growing hops and the majority of New Zealand's hop production occurs within close proximity of the town. By the 1940s commercial production of hops had fully developed into a successful horticultural enterprise which Rita Angus has in part captured in her 1941 watercolour Untitled (Hop Kilns, Motueka).