Home and Building, Volume 18 Number 1 (June 1955)
The 1955 exhibition of the Auckland Society of Arts differs little from last year's showing in either quality or quantity; it does seem to be different in direction, the direction being towards 'modern' art as opposed to conservative and almost exclusively directly representational art, but I question here, as in so many similar exhibitions, whether this is a new direction or possibly only a newly fashionable one.page 47
In answer to this I refer to the three paintings by Michael Kmit, this year, quest exhibitor with the Society and suggest that his three paintings are fashionably 'modern' rather than showing any new direction. I wonder whether they are not just academic paintings in a new guise or does Kmit's lack of feeling for his subjects show as a new direction in painting, and if it does, should we not question this direction and, questioning this, then look about us to discover where we are heading.
It is not enough to be 'modern'. To be modern is to take on a new coat and a new coat does not make us new men. Perhaps the answer is in being neither modern nor un-modern but, with courage, what one is at the time of painting. This honesty at.the time of painting is most apparent in two water-colours by T. A. McCormack, his 'Lilies' and his beautiful 'Portrait' and in K. Airini Vane's drawing 'Pohutukawa Swamp'.
But for the new direction I look for and for the single truly modern painting in the exhibition there is only one work to turn to — Gabrielle Hope's 'Lake Landscape'.