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Manpower Lectures: Antiquity, aesthetes and athleticism

Ticket Information

  • Standard Members: $103.50 each ($100.00 + $3.50 fees)
  • Standard Non-Member: $193.50 each ($190.00 + $3.50 fees)
  • Standard Student: $83.50 each ($80.00 + $3.50 fees)
  • Eventfinda tickets no longer on sale


  • Tue 8 Mar 2022–Tue 29 Mar 2022, 6:00pm–7:00pm




Manpower: Myths of Masculinity brings into focus some of the many images of male bodies that have underpinned the rich holdings of Auckland’s public art gallery since its foundation in 1888 and in the process explores the complex relationships between people and art, and between men and masculinity.

Across lectures from four leading scholars, you will learn about the varying depictions of the male body and the ever-roaming male gaze in art and culture. Starting with an introduction to the exhibition, uncover the appeal and interpretations of artworks for Victorian-era collectors. Embark on a series of scholarly case studies starring the warriors of ancient Greece, the effete Victorian dandy, and the famous strongman Eugen Sandow, who toured New Zealand in 1902.

Manpower: Myths of Masculinity was researched by Senior Curator of International Art Sophie Matthiesson and Assistant Curator, International Art Emma Jameson.

Course outline and Materials

This course comprises four lectures; three will be conducted live and in-person at the Gallery, one will be pre-recorded. Students can watch the pre-recorded lecture at home.
All students will receive a course syllabus with a recommended reading list as well as a copy of the Manpower exhibition catalogue (RRP: $30). Tickets cover in-person admission to lectures one, two and three and online access to the fourth.


Members $100
Non-Members $190 (Includes a one-year membership.)
Students $80 With a valid student ID

Lecture 1: Why Oscar Wilde mattered in Auckland: An introduction to ‘queering’ a colonial collection.
Lecturer: Dr Sophie Matthiesson.
Tue 8 March 2022
More info:

Lecture 2: Ancient Greek male identity and the modern world
Lecturer: Dr Anastasia Bakogianni
Tue 15 March 2022
More info:

Lecture 3: The New Mail Order: Men, Muscles and Masculinity in Early Twentieth Century New Zealand
Lecturer: Dr Caroline Daley
Tue 22 March 2022
More info:

Lecture 4: Queer and Now: On Henry Scott Tuke’s ‘Companions’ (pre-recorded, available online)
Lecturer: Dr Jason Edwards
Online only
More info:

This event will proceed at Red with:
- Distancing
- Facemasks mandatory
- Scan in using the COVID app
- Vaccination passports mandatory

If you are unable to attend this event because you are in self-isolation (because you have tested positive for Covid-19 or you have been identified as a close contact) you are entitled to a full refund.

This event is part of our membership programme. Gallery Members enjoy exclusive benefits while supporting art and artists.
Not a Member yet? Sign up now, from $50 per year.

Image credits: Hendrik Goltzius, Cornelis Cornelisz. van Haarlem, Icarus, 1588. Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1978. | Unknown, ‘The suicide of Ajax the Great. Etrurian red-figured calyx-krater’, c.400-350BCE. © The Trustees of the British Museum | Benjamin J Falk, Eugene Sandow, Full-length Portrait, Standing, Leaning on Column, Facing Left, Wearing Wrestling Leotard, Roman Sandles, and Six Pointed Star Pendant, circa 1894. Courtesy of the Library of Congress. | Henry Tuke, ‘Companions’, 1924. Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, gift of Mr C Macindoe, 1924.

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