Maori Girls by Thomas Selby Cousins, steel engraving hand-coloured, c. 1880

$540.00 AUD

“Maori Girls”, by Thomas Selby Cousins, a large hand-coloured steel engraving depicting two young Maori women outside a carved meeting house, one seated and weaving with flax a kete basket, the other carrying a bundle of flax on her shoulders and a kete filled with kumara yams in her right hand, a greenstone patu club in front of the seated woman, with two eels and a flatfish hanging up to dry from the meeting house roof, the women wearing fine flax cloaks and European-style skirts, each with a greenstone hei-Tiki around their necks.

Titled ‘MAORI GIRLS’,

signed lower right,

Circa 1880

 

Mount area visible: 43x33cm
Paper: 34.5×52.5cm

Condition: fair with some mottled staining evident; recently conserved, adhered to old card mount.

 

Thomas Selby Cousins was born in England in 1840, and sailed to New Zealand in 1863. After moving to Victoria, Australia, for the end of the 1860’s, he returned to New Zealand by 1876. The original painting from which this work is taken would have been produced shortly after.
An oil painting that is obviously Cousin’s original was offered at Bonhams, NY in 2010 (https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/18631/lot/6177/) – this print was probably included in a journal of some kind, much like the ‘Pears Prints’ were distributed. It is not common .

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