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13 August 1988 —
18 September 1988

Evelyn Page:
Seven Decades

Evelyn Page, Luncheon under the ash tree, 1960. Oil on canvas. 597mm x 883mm.

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Evelyn Page has devoted over seventy years of her life to painting. She began to draw before she went to school and today aged 87 she continues. 

A major retrospective touring exhibition which surveys Evelyn Page’s work has been undertaken by the Robert McDougall Art Gallery, Christchurch.

A selection of paintings from this show will be exhibited at the Fisher Gallery, Pakuranga, along with some additional work for the Auckland venue from 14 August - 18 September 1988.

Throughout her remarkable career Evelyn Page has created a body of work which reflects her great artistic and personal qualities. This exhibition celebrates the achievements of one of our countries leading painters.

Her work is vibrant and a direct response to her environment and friends. Landscapes, portraits and still lifes all reveal her delight in interpreting the visual experience.

Evelyn Page (nee Polson) was born in Christchurch in 1899. She began exhibiting her works in the 1920s after attending Canterbury College of Art, and in 1927 joined other young Christchurch artists to form The Group. After traveling in Britain for a year, she returned to New Zealand in 1938 and married noted Canterbury musician Frederick Page. In 1947 she moved to Wellington following his appointment as Professor of Music at Victoria University.

During the 1950s Evelyn Page traveled to Britain, Europe and China and in 1966 was awarded a Queen Elizabeth II Arts Council of New Zealand Grant to study at the Kokoschka School in Vienna. Over the past two decades, she has remained active as a painter and was the first recipient of the Governor General’s Award in 1983, and made a fellow of the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts. 

As Janet Paul remarks in the catalogue which accompanies the exhibition, ‘She speaks through her work. She needs no intermediary. She paints to communicate her vivid reverence for life... In Japan, an artist of the stature of Evelyn Page would long have been declared a precious living treasure.’

Press

→ Artist Ignored, NZ Herald, 09-09-1988
→ Artist's work once controversial, Saturday Courier, 13-08-1988
Eve Page For Auckland, FASHIQN, no. 64, Spring 1988
Light and joy of life, NZ Herald, 18-08-1988
Lively Arts - A Glorious Exhibition, Metro, Aug 1988
Promoter rejects critics, NZ Herald, 15-09-1988

Ephemera

Evelyn Page Seven Decades, 1988, exhibition card