Artist Profile

Raymond McIntyre


Born in Christchurch, Raymond McIntyre was one of seven children in an artistic and musical family. He was taught by Alfred Walsh at the Canterbury School of Art and received a bronze medal for a life study. Sharing a studio with Sydney Lough Thompson and Leonard Booth, he exhibited with the Canterbury Society of Arts from 1899 to 1910. In 1909, McIntyre left for England and over the next fifteen years produced work as a portrait, figure and landscape painter.

McIntyre was very much influenced by Cezanne, Matisse and Modigliani and was closely associated with the Camden Town and London groups of artists. Although he had been trained in Victorian times, he was in tune with turn-of-the-century painting and his work soon showed the strong Japanese influences of the time. He exhibited with the London Group, the New English Art Club, and the Royal Academy; and for some years was the art critic for the "Architectural Review".

Between 1911 and 1915 McIntyre developed his paintings of women's heads, made two trips to France and painted a number of urban scenes. By 1915, McIntyre had become well established as an artist in London circles, and it was at this time that he painted in the Berkshire countryside around Blewbury village.

After 1918, portraits were painted on a larger scale than the earlier panels with formal considerations taking precedence - producing bare, stark forms completely excluding sensuous colour and with thick paint giving a sense of strength and force. Certain characteristics of the sitter were included but the formal qualities convey the inner beauty of the subject rather than the character itself. His sitters' faces with well-defined lips, eyebrows and facial structure, small noses and long elegant necks, bear unvarying expressions of repose, unruffled and unaffected by the fluctuations of the world.

Although many of McIntyre's later works and studies were lost when the contents of his studio were cleared immediately after his death, most of his major works have now been repatriated to New Zealand. There are a considerable number of works held in all major New Zealand galleries, and in particular a large collection in the National Art Gallery

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