New Zealand Artists in the Tate Collection

Despite New Zealand being such a young country, our Arts culture has managed to make a strong impression on the world stage. We have a lot of New Zealand artists exhibited in collections in London and we can guide you to some over the next months. You can see a few of our well-known artists in the Tate Collection. Tate is an institution that houses the United Kingdom’s national collection of British art, and international modern and contemporary art. Here is a list of some of the artists you can keep an eye out for at the Tate Modern and Tate Britain in London as they are part of the Tate Collection.

Bill Culbert,  1935 

Bill Culbert is a significant New Zealand artist, notable for his use of light in painting, photography, sculpture and installation work, as well as his use of found and recycled materials. He graduated from the Royal College of Art in 1960

Seven Seas 1987 Bill Culbert Presented by Tate Patrons 2013, Image courtesy of Tate


Frances Hodgkins, 1869 – 1947

Frances Mary Hodgkins was a painter chiefly of landscape and still life, and for a short period was a designer of textiles. She was born in New Zealand, but spent most of her working life in Britain.

Loveday and Ann: Two Women with a Basket of Flowers 1915 Frances Hodgkins 1869-1947 Purchased 1944. Photo courtesy of Tate

Alexis Hunter, 1948 – 2014

Alexis  Hunter was a contemporary New Zealand painter and photographer, who used feminist theory in her work. She lived in London.


Approach to Fear XIII: Pain – Destruction of Cause 1977 Alexis Hunter 1948-2014 Purchased 2013. Photo courtesy of Tate

Sir David Low, 1891 – 1963

Sir David Alexander Cecil Low  was a New Zealand political cartoonist and caricaturist. He was self-taught. Born in New Zealand, he made his career and earned fame for his Colonel Blimp depictions and his merciless satirising of the personalities and policies of German dictator Adolf Hitler, Italian dictator Benito Mussolini, Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin, and other leaders of his times.

Eileen Mayo, 1906 – 1994

Dame Eileen Rosemary Mayo DBE was an English-born artist and designer who worked in England, Australia and New Zealand in almost every available medium — drawings, woodcuts, lithographs on stone and tempera, tapestry and silk screening. She died in Christchurch, New Zealand in 1994 and lived in New Zealand for around 30 years of her life.

Costume design for Malvolio ‘Twelfth Night’ Dame Eileen Mayo 1906-1994 Presented to the Archive by Eileen Mayo, via her step-son, John Gainsborough, in March 1991. Photo courtesy of Tate

John Panting, 1940–1974

Sculptor John Panting was born and raised in Palmerston North. His works are held in museums in New Zealand and abroad, including four owned by the Tate. In the late sixties and early seventies Panting was one of the most energetic and challenging figures on the London art scene.

Francis Upritchard, 1976 

Francis Upritchard is one of the most well-known New Zealand contemporary artists of our time in London.  She was born in Palmerston North in New Zealand and has lived in London for over a decade. In 2009 she represented New Zealand at the Venice Biennale.

Taking over three rooms of a palazzo, ‘Save Yourself’ is an imaginary landscape populated by strange miniature figures, who seem to belong both in the past and the future. You can see Francis talk us through the exhibition here. Her work Clan of Rob, 2008 can be viewed at the Tate.


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