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Nineteenth Century New Zealand Artists: A Guide & Handbook

WELLINGTON ART CLUB

WELLINGTON ART CLUB

This club was founded in 1892 by a group of artists led by J. M. Nairn as a protest against the way the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts was being run by non-artists. The secretary was originally John Baillie: the first annual exhibition was held on 19 July 1893. The artists were fond of sketching in the Hutt Valley, so Nairn, in about 1894, rented an old cottage at Silverstream for the artists to use as their headquarters when they were going sketching.

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Nairn decorated the cottage with a pumpkin on a roof pole, later with a painting of a pumpkin, and named it Pumpkin Cottage. The club artists were often referred to as the Silverstream Group.