Rudolph (Rudi) Gopas
(1913 - 1982)
Rudolph (Rudi) Gopas was active/lived in New Zealand. Rudolph Gopas is known for painting.
Rudolph (Rudi) Gopas was born in Lithuania, and had exhibited widely throughout Europe before arriving in New Zealand in 1949. He settled in Christchurch and gradually established himself as one of the most important immigrant painters. Gopas' tendency towards German Expressionism encountered some criticism, partially because the style had not yet been accepted or fully explored by New Zealand artists. This initial opposition didn't lessen the influence of the artist who has since been commended for providing what was to become an important stylistic force in New Zealand painting.
Michael Dunn has commented that : "Gopas did much to move the focus of painting away from its regionalist and realist fixation to a more expressive and subjective dimension".
It was unfortunate that Gopas' unorthodox approach separated him so distinctly from his contemporary art circles that he was considered by some as insane. However, the artist used his position at the Canterbury School of Art to work against the traditional methods of formal art training which he scorned openly. Philip Trusttum was among the pupils who were exposed Gopas' ideas at this time. His expressionistic work was fairly radical for Christchurch in the 1950's.