Story: New Zealand culture overseas

Expo 70: John Drawbridge mural (1st of 2)

Expo 70: John Drawbridge mural

Artist John Drawbridge kneels beside the mural depicting New Zealand as a country of light and sunshine that he created for Expo 70 in Osaka, Japan. Fascinated by the aesthetic effect of point light sources after seeing the massed glowworms in Waitomo Caves, Drawbridge created a mural in which light is the main medium. The work consists of two panels. On one side round perspex rods, lit from behind, project glowing points of light above a painted background of red, yellow and orange circles. On the other side, moving light is directed on aluminium rods that flow in waves across the surface of the panel, evoking the effect of alternate cloud and sunlight. The mural, which was created in just 11 weeks, was eventually returned to New Zealand. In the 1980s Drawbridge restored and adapted it to fit into the National Library foyer. It was subsequently removed.

About this item

Alexander Turnbull Library, Dominion Post Collection (PAColl-7327)
Reference: EP/1969/4167

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Nancy Swarbrick, 'New Zealand culture overseas - Art, craft and design', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/photograph/45840/expo-70-john-drawbridge-mural (accessed 29 April 2017)

Story by Nancy Swarbrick, published 22 Oct 2014