• Christina Pataialii

In this new body of work we find paintings that are, more pared back and minimal than we have seen from Christina in the past. There is a settled sense of harmony that slowly and considerately contemplates the natural world, but they remain, unmistakably, works with her distinct painterly touch. There are familiar forms and gestures repeated, the moon, rolling hills, scrubby energetic clouds and brushwork which are all hallmarks of her visual language.

Each work has its own limited palette and is its own tonal exploration. We find a body of work that is exploring a new colour palette - red, orange, peach and olive with some fluorescent highlights. Still, they remain familiar, as she doubles back and revisits some of her early colour explorations - the flurorecent colours which were present in her ground breaking Whitecliffe MFA show of portraits (latterly shown at the Adam Art Gallery in The Tomorrow People).

Through her depiction of landscape in these works it is evident that Christina is acutely aware of the legacy of the of New Zealand modernist paintings, Colin McCahon, Don Binney and Tony Fominson. We see her exploring and abstracting ideas that they were wrestling with. Our identify as people of this place is so deeply imbued with this particular landscape, our hills, our mountains.

For Christina landscapes are also a way to explore the use of light and how subtle shifts in light can change the atmosphere and mood. As is often felt through Christina’s work there is a sense of liminality, of in-betweenness - we see delicate, nuanced changes in tone, emphasis and perspective.

The works are now available to view in the gallery and online. Please contact McLeavey Gallery for more information.

Opening Hours

  • Wednesday - Friday, 11am–5pm
  • Saturday, 11am–3pm


  • 147 Cuba Street
  • Te Aro
  • Pōneke Wellington