Film tells the story of reluctant Frances Hodgkins sitter




Frances-Hodgkins, The goose girl, 1905. 


Courtesy of the Field Collection Trust.


Paraparaumu’s Red Capewell may now be in her ‘80s but age hasn’t dimmed her recollection of the time her mother-in-law, Alice, was asked by our most acclaimed expatriate painter, Frances Hodgkins to sit for two paintings.

Red tells the story in a new short film, Alice’s Secret, produced by Mahara Gallery. Download the film here.
When Frances Hodgkins and her friend Dorothy Kate Richmond came to Paraparaumu on a painting holiday in 1905, they looked for someone to carry their equipment.

“Frances was told to go across the road to the Berretti house because there were four girls there and surely one of them could carry her easel,” says Red Capewell in the film.

“Well, she knocked on the door and Alice Berretti answered and she had her hair all tucked up in a tam ‘o shanter – beautiful, Italian, auburn hair. But she didn’t like it because she got teased.”

When Frances Hodgkins saw the hair she told Alice that she wanted to paint her. The result was Babette, now held in the Dowse Art Museum in Lower Hutt and Goose Girl, one of the best known of Frances Hodgkins’ works held in the Kāpiti-based Field Collection.

The film gets its title from Alice’s reluctance to tell anybody about the sittings. The family didn’t find out until a gathering to celebrate Alice’s 70th birthday.
Alice’s Secret has been written and directed by Kevin Ramshaw and filmed and edited by Dean Hapeta of Kia Kaha Productions.



We're looking for art donations for fund-raising auction



Preparing the Susan Skerman print for the auction are from left, ceramic artist Pamella Annsouth, Mahara Gallery Director Janet Bayly and Mahara Gallery Patron, Gillian, Lady Deane. Photo: Jack Penman.

We are looking for donations of art works you may have in your attics or basements you're prepared to donate for an exhibition and auction to raise money for the Gallery’s Redevelopment Project.

“Many people have art works that they just don’t have room for or no longer take delight in,” says Gallery Director Janet Bayly.  “They may not be old masters but they could very well have appeal for potential buyers and they could certainly help the Redevelopment Project.

“These works could help us to create an interesting exhibition and generate money for the redevelopment project which is now very much back on track.”

The exhibition and auction has been named Collectables Seeking New Homes.  It begins with the exhibition which runs from 15 December, through the Christmas break to be followed by the auction on 9 February 2019.

A work already donated is a screen print by Susan Skerman, the artist who produced the Bush Walk panels that were a stand-out at the New Zealand pavilion at the 1970 Osaka World’s Fair at Osaka, Japan.

“Susan now lives in Waikanae and we’re thrilled to have one of her works for the auction,” said Janet Bayly.

The Gallery aims to exhibit 100 works selected from donations by a panel which will include an independent art expert.

As the exhibition builds, it will be posted on the Gallery website.

Information on who to contact and how to donate can be found on the website or by picking up a flier from the Gallery.



Collectables Offer Form Aug 2018

Exhibitions on from 5 August to 9 September 2018

You are warmly invited to the opening of the following suite of exhibitions, on Saturday 4 August from 5 – 6.30pm with special guests Mayor of Kāpiti, K. Gurunathan, the Dhan Karunai Illam Trust, Children’s Home, South India & Professional Weavers Network of NZ Inc.

CHAIN REACTION A contemporary installation of hand weaving.
A LENS INTO THE LIVES OF THE ILLAM CHILDREN in collaboration with Mo Greig. 
A GIRL CALLED ALICE Frances Hodgkins and local artists.



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