A renowned art historian will delve into the scandalous world of art crime in an upcoming talk.

Friends of Rotorua Museum is hosting a talk by Penelope Jackson on Thursday August 9 at 6pm.

It will take place at Te Rūnanga Tea House where Penelope will discuss the most scandalous art crimes in New Zealand over the past 100 years.

A trustee of the NZ Art Crime Research Trust, she is the author of Art Thieves, Fakers & Fraudsters: The New Zealand Story, published in 2016.


Originally born in Wellington, Penelope moved around a lot as a result of a father in the Air Force.

She went on to get qualifications from five different universities and taught high school art history and classical studies for six years, before moving into the museum and art gallery industry.

After moving to Tauranga in the late 90s, she taught art history and history at Waikato University and worked part-time as a curator at the yet-to-be-established Tauranga Art Gallery from the end of 2003.

Six years later Penelope became its second director until her departure in 2015.

Since then she has been exploring her passion for New Zealand art crimes.

Rotorua Museum events and engagement co-ordinator Tori Williams encourages people to go along because Penelope is passionate about researching New Zealand art crimes and her unique findings will make this an interesting talk.

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As a founding member of the New Zealand Art Crime Research Trust, Penelope also helps run the annual Art Crime Symposium, Tori says.

"Some international art crimes have been made into blockbuster movies and are often unexplained.

"This is a unique opportunity to learn more about this intriguing type of crime with actual New Zealand case studies."

She says Penelope last spoke to a sold-out audience at Rotorua Museum in March 2013 when she was the director of Tauranga Art Gallery.

Tickets are $10 for members of Friends of Rotorua Museum and $15 for non-members.
Tickets are available from Rotorua Lakes Council reception (1061 Haupapa St, Rotorua). Numbers are limited.

Light refreshments will be provided from 5.30pm with the talk beginning at 6pm.

For more information contact Janette Irvine, email kjirvine@xtra.co.nz or phone (027) 294 2870

The details
- What: Talk: Art Thieves, Fakers and Fraudsters
- When: Thursday August 9, 6pm
- Where: Te Rūnanga Tea House
- Cost: $10 for Friends members and $15 for non-members