Scarface Claw to be dedicated in museum expo

Life-sized bronze statues of Hairy Maclary and his animal friends located on the waterfront on The Strand.

Tauranga resident Dame Lynley Dodd is known for her bestselling books Hairy Maclary and Friends.

The book series already has a tribute in the form of a life-sized bronze statues of Hairy Maclary and his animal friends located on the waterfront on The Strand.

Scarface Claw, the roughest and toughest, boldest and bravest of cats, takes centre stage at Waikato Museum in an exhibition dedicated to the villain of the Hairy Maclary and Friends book series.

Waikato Museum is the first venue in New Zealand to host The Life and Times of Scarface Claw, which opens this Saturday January 26.

The exhibition features more than 40 original illustrations by Dame Lynley Dodd dating back to Scarface’s first appearance in 1983’s Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy, recently named New Zealand’s best-selling book of the decade.

“I am delighted that Scarface Claw is having an outing to Waikato Museum, which is not too far from my hometown of Tauranga,” says Dame Lynley.

Also included in the exhibition is the artwork and text from Scarface’s latest misadventure, Scarface Claw, Hold Tight! Published in 2017, the book is based on a real-life cliff-hanger which finds Scarface far from home.

As well as the paintings by Dame Lynley, visitors to the exhibition can view the celebrated author’s research, preliminary drawings, and preparatory work she does to produce a picture book.

Waikato Museum Director Cherie Meecham says Dame Lynley’s books have been a mainstay of growing up in New Zealand for more than 30 years.

“From current fans to those whose childhood included Hairy Maclary, Scarface Claw, Bottomley Potts, Hercules Morse and the rest of the gang, this exhibition has cross-generational appeal,” she says.

The Life and Times of Scarface Claw was originally curated by art historian Penelope Jackson for the State Library of Western Australia and the Awesome Arts Festival.

Dame Lynley will be at Waikato Museum on Saturday February 16 from 10.30am – 12pm for a book signing session, follow by a question and answer session led by Penelope from 1.30pm – 2.30pm.

On Thursday March 28 from 5.30pm – 6.30pm, Penelope will share her knowledge of Dame Lynley’s work having curated three exhibitions celebrating her oeuvre.

The Life and Times of Scarface Claw runs until May 12 2019. Waikato is open daily from 10am – 5pm with free entry.

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