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Auckland Art Gallery opens outstanding exhibition of international Modern masters
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art director Simon Groom (left) and Auckland Art Gallery director Chris Saines (right) standing in front of Roy Lichtenstein's
In the Car, 1963 at the gala opening of the exhibition.

AUCKLAND CITY.- Auckland Art Gallery Toi o T.maki is presenting Degas to Dali . an outstanding exhibition of international modern artists whose work spans 100 years.

Seventy-nine works of art by influential and celebrated artists, such as Monet, Van Gogh, Renoir, Ernst, Magritte and Warhol have travelled to New Zealand.

Opened 3 March 2012, the exhibition from the National Galleries of Scotland (NGS) represents the major art movements of the mid-19th to mid-20th centuries.

Degas to Dali is the first major international exhibition since the Gallery re-opened its newly developed building in September. It offers New Zealanders the opportunity to come face to face with works from a remarkable range of artists who have shaped the world of modern art.

"We are delighted to be bringing an exhibition of this calibre to New Zealand," says Regional Facilities Auckland (RFA) chief executive Robert Domm. "We especially look forward to seeing such a remarkable group of paintings and sculptures presented in our own world-class gallery."

Degas to Dali illustrates the story of modern art through painting, sculpture and works on paper. It begins with the revolutionary works of the French Impressionist and Post-Impressionist periods, and ranges through Cubism, Surrealism, German Expressionism, the British post-WWII period and American Pop.

‘Such is the calibre of works in this exhibition that all are almost constantly on display at the various national galleries in Scotland, or on loan to other institutions,’ says Simon Groom, Scottish National Galleries of Modern Art spokesperson. ‘From van Gogh’s well-known Olive Trees, which he famously painted when he was in the asylum, through to the iconic Raphaelesque Head Exploding by Dalí. We are excited to be able to work alongside Auckland Art Gallery in bringing this exhibition to New Zealand.’

‘Through Degas to Dalí we wanted to restate our commitment to presenting high quality international exhibitions’, says RFA Gallery Director Chris Saines. ‘From the Impressionists onward, there was a relentless questioning of tradition in art that shaped the course of Modernism. Some of the movement’s most influential figures are represented by major works, among them Degas’ great portrait of the Florentine art critic Diego Martelli and Rene Magritte’s enigmatic The Black Flag.’

Degas to Dalí encompasses some of the most formative and celebrated figures in the history of modern art. It is rare to experience works of such quality on such a scale. The Gallery is proud to be working with the NGS to present the masters of the modern era in this not-to-be-missed exhibition.

Since the Gallery’s September opening, Degas to Dalí will be the first admission-charged special exhibition. It will be on show for three months.

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