This Saturday at 12.30pm, the Art Gallery at Te Manawa will host the latest in a series of Art Gallery talks in support of Colin McCahon: A Centenary Exhibition.

Art historian Dr Peter Simpson will give an illustrated presentation, moving through A Centenary Exhibition and discussing each work in turn, placing them in the context of McCahon's developing career.

Simpson has written extensively about Colin McCahon's life and art practice, with books published throughout the 2000s.

He has curated several exhibitions of McCahon's work, sometimes in association with his books.


The research he did for his new monograph on McCahon, There is Only One Direction: 1919-1959, will heavily inform his Te Manawa talk as it presents new perspectives on old works.

Outside the major metropolitan collections residing in the Auckland Art Gallery, Te Papa Tongarewa and the Hocken collection, Te Manawa has assembled one of the richest bodies of the work of Colin McCahon.

All 18 of these works are displayed in A Centenary Exhibition (alongside two portraits of McCahon by Toss Woollaston.

Many of these were acquired during a period of active collecting at the Manawatū Art Gallery between 1971 and 1979, and the works range in date from 1947 to 1973.

Copies of Simpson's book will be available at the presentation, and he will be happy to sign copies. Entry to the talk and the Art Gallery is free.

Colin McCahon: A Centenary Exhibition is open until December 1.