Dorothy Richmond, 1903: "Portrait of the Dutch Boy Fishing"

Art History, NZ, page 4

In the decade that centred on 1900, painting mirrored the country's sense of well being. There was a rapid growth in portraiture, fostered by Robert Atkinson and by Nairn, Van der Velden, DC Hutton and Nerli, and Louis John Steele.

detail from Steele, "Spoils of War", c. Ak Art Gallery

Though a few of them specialised, portraits were painted by many of the younger artists such as Grace Joel, Alfred Henry O'Keefe, Frances Mary Hodgkins ..

Frances Mary Hodgkins, "Maori Woman and Child" 1900, National Art Gallery, Wellington

..Sydney L Thompson, Raymond McIntyre, A Elizabeth Kelly, Walter A Bowring, and slightly later, by Archibald F Nicoll, E Spencer Macky and others.

The country's prosperity was likewise reflected in the townscape. The sense of locality fostered by the colonial townscapes or the sense of progress identifiable in lithoprints such as those produced by Potts and Willis of Wanganui began to take on - in the works of Nairn, van der Velden, Walter Wright, Owen Merton, Edward Fristrom, Mabel Hill, and HW Young - a more intimate look in which domestic incident had a place as did interior views.

This prosperity also underlies the paintings of shipping by John Gibb

The human image was increasingly introduced into paintings during this period. Besides the younger artists mentioned above, people, either in landscapes or interiors, or in their own right, became an important element in works by George E Butler, Dorothy Kate Richmond (image top), James F Scott, Frances McCracken, Robert Proctor, Maud Sherwood, H Linley Richardson (image below) and GK Webber (before he was killed in WWI at the age of 26)

detail, H Linley Richardson: "A School Girl" 1921, Ak City Art Gallery

In the graphic media the human figure dominated illustrative work such as that by Leonard H Booth, and in the caricatures of AV Hunt and David Low.

Some graphic work emphasised the Art Nouvea influence, likewise apparent in the landscapes of artists as diverse as Dorothy Kate Richmond (image below), Merton, Fristrom, AW Walsh, Margaret Stoddart and Nugent Welch.

detail, DK Richmond, "Mount Egmont" 1929, National Art Gallery, Wellington

It's symbolic aspects also enriched the still lifes of O'Keefe, DK Richmond and Stoddart. There was also a growing interest in animal painting.

In this William Greene led, but its heyday came later in the 1920's, especially in the paintings by Violet E Whiteman

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