Curatorial Internship recipient to challenge traditions of portraiture
Georgie Keyse from Invercargill, has been named as the recipient of the 2019 Liz Stringer Curatorial Internship at the
New Zealand Portrait Gallery Te Pūkenga Whakaata.
The internship provides the recipient with hands-on curatorial skills across a wide range of activities at the gallery,
which involves curating two shows featuring works from the New Zealand Portrait Gallery Te Pūkenga Whakaata Collection
and contribution of new perspectives, connections, and appreciation of portraiture.
New Zealand Portrait Gallery’s Director, Jaenine Parkinson, says Georgie was selected because of her fresh ideas, huge
potential and eagerness to learn.
Reflecting on the achievement, Georgie says “I am very much looking forward to working with, and learning from, the team
at the New Zealand Portrait Gallery. I hope to develop my curatorial skills, build my confidence, and gain some
practical experience across a range of gallery activities. I believe this will help inform the path that I will take in
After completing a BA Hons in Art History and Marketing at Victoria University, Georgie returned to her hometown,
Invercargill, for a position as Public Programmes Manager at the City Gallery Invercargill. Following the gallery’s
closure, Georgie used the opportunity to further her academic studies and enrolled in the Post Graduate Diploma in
Museum Studies at Massey University.
“My programme co-ordinator, Dr Susan Abasa, suggested I apply for this internship. She has been wonderfully supportive
and re-arranged assignment deadlines and advised me every step of the application process. My boss in Invercargill has
also been really supportive so I have been incredibly lucky.”
Georgie will commence the internship this month and will start focusing on her exhibition called What is a Portrait?
Unconventional constructions of identity which will be showcased at the gallery in December.
“The exhibition I’m proposing deliberately challenges the stereotypical conditions of portraiture. Commentators such as
Cynthia Freeland tend to opt for formal conditions: a visible body; a recognizable inner-life and a deliberate pose. I
was inspired by Shannon Novak’s portrait Michael Smither (2016) in the New Zealand Portrait Gallery’s collection.
Overtly, it has none of these elements – yet it works as a portrait. My intention is to reveal how and why this is so
and how other artists subvert traditions in portraiture,” says Keyse.
The internship was established by New Zealand Portrait Gallery Trustee Liz Stringer in 2017 to give recent graduates
essential hands-on experience in exhibition making.
New Zealand Portrait Gallery Te Pūkenga Whakaata presents stories of New Zealanders through the art of portraiture.