May His Light Shine (Tau Cross)

May His Light Shine (Tau Cross)

  • Artist

    Colin McCahon

  • Production Date


  • Medium

    synthetic polymer paint on unstretched canvas

  • Size

    1875 x 2380 mm

  • Credit

    Chartwell Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, 1980

  • Accession Number


  • Accession Date

    Apr 1980

  • Department

    New Zealand Art

  • Classification


  • Collection


  • Subjects

    Christianity, religious art, crosses (objects), text, handwriting, belief & doubt, faith

  • Description

    This is one of Colin McCahon’s last landscapes of urban Auckland. The idea for the work began from the fact that the artist’s son had almost transformed his parents’ Muriwai home into a nursery for young kumara plants.

    As well, the artist was fascinated with the ancient taumata atua (fertility stone) that is named Rongo that rests in Cornwall Park. The stone is a spiritual conduit for a garden’s fecundity. McCahon recognised that Auckland once had extensive kumara gardens because of the region’s fertile volcanic soil.
    (Local Atlas, 2004)

Exhibition history