Bloomsbury South The Arts in Christchurch 1933-1953 by Peter Simpson. Published by Auckland University Press, 2016

Setting the scene: Bloomsbury South The Arts in Christchurch 1933-1953


Peter Simpson’s latest publication, the impressive literary history Bloomsbury South The Arts in Christchurch 1933-1953 is a book that was waiting to be written. This generous, scholarly 353-page read, published by Auckland University Press in 2016, documents a Christchurch that disappeared long before the devastating earthquakes changed the face of the city forever. One that
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Portrait of Alan MacDiarmid (2001) by Douglas MacDiarmid. Acrylic on handmade paper. Collection of New Zealand Portrait Gallery, Wellington.

Blood ties and instinct – a portrait of Alan MacDiarmid


In 2001, Douglas MacDiarmid painted a fascinating portrait of his first cousin, Nobel Prize-winning New Zealand scientist Alan MacDiarmid. Each bound up in his own passion on different continents, the two expatriates first met later in life and found an immediate bond. This was a painting Douglas would have done sooner or later, but was motivated
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Patrick a la plage (1979) by Douglas MacDiarmid

Painting Patrick


Patrick is Douglas MacDiarmid's partner of many decades, his other half who has taken care of day to day distractions to make it possible for Douglas to single-mindedly focus on painting. Eight years younger than Douglas, Patrick goes by just one name, like most Guadeloupeans. They grow closer as each year passes and complement one
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La Condition Humaine (2008) by Douglas MacDiarmid. Acrylic on canvas. Douglas and Patrick in Egypt.

An essay about Douglas MacDiarmid | Contemporary Hum


A Man for all Seasons by Anna Cahill | published 16.02.17 Now 94, Douglas MacDiarmid is the undoubted pioneer of New Zealand expatriate painters in Paris. He has lived in France permanently since 1951—much of that time in Montmartre—and forged a successful international career, continuing into his 90s to paint, exhibit and push new boundaries.
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Self portrait December 1948, oil, Alexander Turnbull Library art collection, Wellington

In his own image – how Douglas MacDiarmid sees himself


Self-portraits are amongst the hardest, most exacting form of art, especially if the painter is honest. Unlike the snapshot selfies of the me generation, these images are usually less driven by vanity and more by practical or analytical purposes. When no model is available, there is always that face the painter knows best – the
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Life and Times of Douglas MacDiarmid biography
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