Travel Planner: Hilma of Klint’s secret paintings come to Wellington

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The Ten Greatest, 1907. Tickets are now on sale for Hilma of Klint: The Secret Paintings at City Gallery Wellington Te Whare Toi. Photo / Moderna Museet, Stockholm, Sweden.

Pipped as a once-in-a-lifetime exhibition with works that were kept secret and hidden for a long time, there are now tickets for sale for Hilma af Klint: The Secret Paintings at City Gallery Wellington Te Whare Toi, in collaboration with the Aotearoa New Zealand Festival of the Arts.

Hilma af Klint was born in Sweden in 1862 and is considered one of Europe’s earliest abstract painters. No small feat for a woman on the move in a male-dominated landscape at the turn of the 20th century.

Both artist and mystic, spiritualism played a major role in Klint’s work. Sessions and prayer were often conducted as part of a female-only group of artists of which she was a member, known as “The Five.” The quintet liked to channel various invisible forces into their creations, although by Klint was also inspired by scientific advances.

very fascinated? It gets better.

Upon her death in 1944, Hilma af Klint conditioned that her work should be kept secret for at least 20 years, in the firm belief that the world was not yet ready for it. Those with a keen eye will find notebooks at the Wellington exhibition with “+ x”, the sign she used to request that the artwork be kept hidden.

Hilma af Klint at her studio at Hamngatan 5, Stockholm C1895.  Photo / Hilma af Klint Foundation, Stockholm
Hilma af Klint at her studio at Hamngatan 5, Stockholm C1895. Photo / Hilma af Klint Foundation, Stockholm

It seems that Hilma’s long veil of secrecy has paid off. Fast forward to today, and she is one of the world’s most talked about artists exhibiting at prestigious galleries across the globe. While exhibiting Hilma af Klint: The Secret Paintings in New York, The Guggenheim attracted 600,000 visitors – its highest attendance for any show in history. So if you’re wondering if you should visit the first Klint exhibition ever to adorn the Aotearoa coast – you should.

When you arrive in Wellington from December 4 and run until March 27, 2022, secure your tickets at ticketmaster.co.nz and hop on the City Gallery website (hilma.citygallery.org.nz) to stay across all related events such as tours, panel discussions and evening tours.

Check alert level restrictions and the Ministry of Health advice before traveling. covid19.govt.nz

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