Selections from reviews of
‘A Blaze of Colour’

"What I find most remarkable is the way in which Tovey's daughter is able to write such a fair biography. ... Understanding is tempered with an objective look at a man who was as flawed as he was great."
(Pat White, Wairarapa Times, 02.12.1998)

"Gordon Tovey was quite a man: painter, poet, photographer and philosopher, and ended up helping free New Zealand schools from the formality of the past. He brought creativity and colour into classrooms and became a force in the lives of New Zealand's best known artists. You may well find this book a fascinating read."
(Angela Brown, The Daily Telegraph, 25.11.1998)

"She (Henderson) was probably the only one who could produce such an honest warts and all account. Her advantage was two fold. She had intimate knowledge of her subject and as an educationist herself, a professional understanding."
(Art News, Autumn 1998)

"Anyone interested in education in New Zealand should read A Blaze of Colour."
(Stephanie Sheehan, Northern Advocate, 04.03.1998)

"Carol Henderson's biography of her father should prove to be a worthwile read, especially for those of you with an interest in primary level of art education in New Zealand ... including many of his poems and some of his paintings, this book gives real insight into an interesting New Zealander."
(Ann Marie Curtis, Salient, March 1998)

"(Tovey) was appointed National Supervisor Arts and Crafts in 1946, and in the following 20 years challenged and changed classroom art and cultural attitudes. He certainly was an individual who did what he fervently believed in, and who, by and large, took everyone along with him. His talents were undoubtedly exactly what was needed at the time and this book is a fitting memorial to his life."
(Ann Masters, The Marlborough Press, 15.06.1998)

"Carol Henderson's biography of her father is valuable in many respects ... A Blaze of Colour provides insight into Tovey's work."
(Gregory O'Brian, Landfall, Spring 1998)


Quotes from ex Art Specialists for ‘A Blaze of Colour’

"A Blaze of Colour is wonderful — full of memories of a time of hope for the future and new initiatives! It was an amazing time and you have documented it so well..."
(John Drawbridge, ex Art Adviser, letter to the author, 23.03.1998)

"What you have done for us in a most courageous way has given us an account of a man, put into a perspective which many of us never had. I am grateful for that. I am always grateful for writing of that quality which penetrates and goes beneath superficiality and finds reality below, which is in fact the truth..."
(Peter Smith, ex Art Adviser, recorded 1998 at Auckland launch of A Blaze of Colour)

"If you know nothing of Gordon and his achievements, this book will give you a view of an exciting time in New Zealand education. If you know something of Gordon Tovey, this book will fill in many blanks and puzzles. I highly recommend it as I feel it is a profound record and tribute to one of New Zealand's greatest educators and visionaries."
(Jeanne Macaskill ex Art Adviser)

"I personally could not put the manuscript down. Even those who never met him will be able to discover the real person and gain so much insight by just reading the story: it is history, education, philosophy, psychology, poetry, an art work in its own right and finally a damn good story."
(Murray Gilbert, ex Art Adviser, letter to publisher David Batemen, 20.08.1991)