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THS Talks: Robley's Love Affair with Tauranga

Ticket Information

  • Free Admission


  • Sun 18 Feb 2024, 2:00pm–3:00pm


All Ages

Horatio Gordon Robley (1840-1930) sailed into Tauranga Harbour with the 68th Durham Light Infantry on 22 January 1864. He passed his time before, during, and after the Battle of Gate Pā | Pukehinahina sketching and painting the surrounding landscape, people, and events. His principal base was with Ngāti Tapu in Matapihi. When the London Illustrated News printed the sketches Robley had made on the morning after the battle, they provoked outrage and helped to swing British opinion against the New Zealand Wars.

Former Te Papa curator, Tim Walker, wrote his thesis on soldier and prolific artist Robley during the 1980s. He went on to develop a close friendship with Robley’s Māori descendants, and to further research holdings of material relating to him in the US, UK, and Australia.

The legacy that Robley has left to the people of Tauranga Moana via his artworks has deepened our understanding of time, distance, and culture. Walker is uniquely qualified to bring Robley's story to life, and this talk will outline the approach he is taking as he researches and writes a new book centered on Robley.

Koha entry.

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