The Man in the Hat (2009)

  • Documentary
  • 1h 13m

In this portrait of Wellington art dealer McLeavey seems to live a highly ordered life in a state of perpetual curiosity about what makes any of us in this corner of the world tick, himself included.

Starting out as a dealer from his bedroom flat in 1966, McLeavey was already championing Toss Woollaston, Colin McCahon and Gordon Walters as purveyors of vision informed by New Zealand experience. He opened his two-room dealer gallery at 147 Cuba Street in 1968. Forty years and 500 or so exhibitions later he’s still there.

Cinematographer Leon Narbey follows the dapper man in a hat from his home in Hill Street on the circuitous scenic route he takes each morning to work. Bieringa intersperses this lyrical picture of McLeavey’s Wellington with readings from his correspondence and frank, revealing conversations with the man himself.


Sam Neill


Luit Bieringa


Jan Bieringa

Director of Photography

Leon Narbey


Lala Rolls



Country of Origin

New Zealand

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