Rare Books Talk by Stephanie Smith (2016)
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Photograph of archivist Stephanie Smith with Maori Patterns Painted & Carved by John Henry Menzies. The classic book of Maori art designs was first published in 1904 as a result of Menzies study of Canterbury Museum's Maori artefacts. This reprint dates from 1975(?). Menzies was a skilled carver. In 1879 he built his homestead 'Glen Mona' which was elaboratively decorated with carvings of Maori patterns and flower motifs. He also carved St Luke's Church in Little Akaloa which included Maori patterns in both stone and wood carving and is the earliest known example of a Pakeha designer using Maori decorative motifs for a Pakeha congregation. The church still stands today as does 'Rehutai' in Menzies Bay, built for his son William in 1894. 'Glen Mona' burned down in 1907 and its replacement was similarly decorated but destroyed by fire in 1929. Photograph: Debbie McCauley.