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Karl Maughan Cuts Up His Largest Oil Painting

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19 November 2008
News Release

Karl Maughan Cuts Up His Largest Oil Painting

Internationally renowned artist, Karl Maughan, takes the scissors to the single largest oil painting he’s ever produced today at its unveiling at SKYCITY Grand Hotel’s new bar, The Lobby, at 10.30am.

The work, titled Forest Road, is a five-metre original oil featuring over one thousand of Maughan’s characteristic rhododendron flowers, in vibrant reds and purples.

Art lovers may be horrified at the thought of a Maughan work being deliberately cut up into pieces, however the work was destined for this purpose.

The work, which would be valued at somewhere between $60,000 and $70,000 if available for sale, represents a unique collaboration between Maughan and Christensen Estate, to mark its final vintage, the 2005 Christensen Estate Waiheke Island Merlot. The wine is fragrant with aromas of black cherry, cassis and chocolate box and the palate displays sweet fruit with hints of mocha and liquorice, giving way to a silky, smoky finish.

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Artist, Karl Maughan, said that while many artists had collaborated in the past to produce wine labels, he believed it was the first time an actual painting had been cut up into pieces.

“Basil suggested the idea of taking an original artwork and re-assembling it into a different art form and I always like a challenge.

I liked his thinking and it has inspired me to produce a painting that is true to my style, but one that I had to re-style to include mostly foreground flowers, which has been fascinating for me in terms of structure.

This meant that I had to reconsider my use of shrubbery and concentrate on the rhododendron flowers – I estimate there are at least 1500 of them in this painting.

Basil and I have also recorded the actual painting of the painting and I had some fun with the canvas by painting a wine glass, then filling it, then painting the bottle itself which of course is not visible in the final painting but you can view it on,” said Maughan.

Basil Christensen of Christensen Estate, said the painting would be cut up by Maughan into 1000 numbered pieces and hand labelled onto its limited edition merlot series which would be on sale at the Gow Langsford Gallery in central city Auckland from Thursday 4 December.

“When we sold the Estate earlier this year, it was always our intention to do something special with this vintage which was the last we produced. My wife Julie and I collaborated with artist Paul Dibble on our first vintage, and art has always held a special place in our family – creative runs in our blood.

My great grandfather, Francis Barraud, painted ‘His Master’s Voice’, or HMV as it is usually abbreviated to today, which is the painting of the dog Nipper listening to a cylinder phonograph, later changed to a gramophone, which was for many years the famous trademark of a large record label.

We loved the idea of sharing one of Karl’s artworks with a large group of people, particularly when original oils may be out of the reach for some,” said Christensen.

Christensen Estate and Maughan have also collaborated with the SKYCITY Entertainment Group on a special package that will be auctioned to benefit Kidz First Children’s Hospital at Middlemore. This package will be auctioned at a function at the Gow Langsford Gallery, 7pm Thursday 4 December.

The package will include a sumptuous dinner for four people at SKYCITY Grand Hotel’s Dine by Peter Gordon restaurant, hosted by Maughan and the Christensens. Internationally renowned chef, Peter Gordon, will design a special degustation menu to accompany the 2005 Christensen Estate Waiheke Island merlot and guests will receive their own boxed set of six bottles which will include those labels which carry part of Maughan’s signature on the painting.

The limited edition 2005 Christensen Estate Waiheke Island merlot can be purchased from Gow Langsford Gallery for $250 per bottle, or $1,500 for the signed boxed set of six which will be accompanied by an A3 print of Maughan’s Forest Road painting. Visit or phone +64 9 303 4290 to order.


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