Artist Profile

Suzanne Goldberg

Born 1940, Died 2000
 

Suzanne Goldberg was born in Auckland. Graduating from Elam in 1961 with honours, Goldberg was awarded the Joe Raynes Scholarship in her final year. She travelled to England in 1965 on a QE11 Arts Council study grant award where she attended the Hornsey College.

Goldberg was an artist that worked in the borderland between abstract and representational art. Without making reference to precise shapes, she conveyed the flavour of the particular landscapes. Her abstract paintings are acclaimed, they feature birds and were recently produced in James McNeish's book "An Albatross Too Many." Working in oil she constantly experimented with different techniques. She created interesting effects by washing paint off with turpentine; a process called decalcomania (also used by the Surrealists), in which paper is used to apply paint by taking impressions from paint layered on board. Her favourite tones were burnt sienna and olive - giving her paintings a certain glow.

Peter Tomory, a director of the Auckland City Art Gallery in the 1960s, commended her interpretation of the landscape and her handling of paint that exploits the plastic and sensuous qualities of that medium. He also commented that Goldberg's paintings suggest a "floating world" somewhere between a motif observed and its imaginative reconstruction as an image.

Her first solo show was held in 1962 as was an exhibition entitled "Two New Names" in which she exhibited with Pat Hanly. In 1963 three of her paintings were selected for Auckland City Art Gallery's Contemporary New Zealand Painting exhibition. Goldberg was also one of fifteen New Zealand artists to be shown at the Commonwealth exhibition in London in 1965.

Goldberg's art is held in all major public collections including the National Gallery (now Te Papa), Wellington, Auckland Art Gallery, Waikato Museum of Art and History. Her work is also owned by the University of Auckland, Victoria University of Wellington, the Ford Motor Company and New Zealand consulates in Washington, Tokyo, New York and Canberra.

A major retrospective of Goldberg's art took place at the Dowse Museum, in Lower Hutt, in 1999.

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