Ans Westra, one of New Zealand's most famous and notable photographers has recorded the lives of New Zealanders - Maori and Pakeha. Over time, she has traveled the country many times, to take documentary style photographs that will become part of one of our Exhibitions in the Oranjehof gallery.
Ans acquired national fame after the publication of Washday at the Pah. The Minister of Education decided to destroy the print run of 38,000 books in 1964 - because they gave too honest a picture of the living conditions of Maori people. Too Dutch, you could almost say…
That was typically Ans. She wasn't interested in taking pictures of smiley people, but chose to depict real life, real people. And that's exactly what she is doing now.
Over a period of five decades Ans has created a photographic record of Maori life. Lately she has also delved into the Muslim world which culminated in the book The Crescent Moon: The Asian Face of Islam in New Zealand.
We'll all be the richer, with these unique images of our new home country.