Canterbury Decorative & Fine Arts Society (CADFAS)

Founded in 2001, CADFAS (Canterbury Decorative and Fine Arts Society) was the first NZ overseas member society of The Arts Society (formerly NADFAS) in the UK.

The success of the Society is built on the high quality of the monthly lectures which are given by lecturers of proven ability who are specialists in their field and are endorsed by NADFAS.

CADFAS is twinned with both the Harrogate and Brisbane River Societies, allowing for a regular exchange of programme details between the Societies.

CADFAS Programme Details

The lectures are held in the Charles Luney Auditorium, St Margaret’s College, 12 Winchester Street, at 7.30 pm on a Monday evening. They last approximately one hour and wine and sandwiches are served afterwards.

One Half Study Day conducted by John Benjamin will be held in 2018 with the venue to be advised.The individual topics are covered in more detail than is possible in a lecture situation and in the past members have found the more interactive, small group setting both informative and enjoyable.


Members of CADFAS pay an annual subscription which enables the society to organise a programme of eight lectures a year which are chosen to inform, stimulate and entertain.


2018 Lectures

Please click on the button to the right for biographies of lecturers, topic synopses and details of the optional Half Study Day.

Helen Rufus-Ward

Glorious Things: Discovering Byzantium Through Its Art

Monday 26 February 2018

Sarah Cove

The Materials & Techniques of British Portrait Painting, c.1530-1950

Monday 26 March 2018

Simon Rees

Opera & Design

Monday 14 May 2018

Jacqueline Cockburn

From Cubism to Surrealism: Dali, Lorca & Bunuel

Monday 9 July 2018

Julian Richards

Art of the Prehistoric Potter

Monday 6 August 2018

Gavin Plumley

The Two Gustavs: Mahler & Klimt

Monday 10 September 2018

John Benjamin

The Life & Works of Harry Murphy

Tuesday 16 October 2018

Plus Half Study Day Tuesday 16 October

Chloë Sayer

¡Fiesta! Festivals in Modern Mexico

Monday 19 November 2018

CADFAS Supporting the Arts

New Zealand’s very first DFAS, the Canterbury Society is now celebrating its 15th year.

As a further testament to the amazing resilience of the Christchurch community following the devastating earthquakes of September 2010 and February 2011, the Canterbury DFAS programme has not missed hosting a single lecture.

Prior to the earthquakes, the Society had established a Youth Arts Programme which funded pupils from low-decile schools to visit the Christchurch Art Gallery and participate in the Schools Education Programme.

Happily, after a five year hiatus while the Christchurch Gallery was intensively restored and repaired, the Gallery was re-opened in December 2015 and the DFAS Youth Arts Programme is back in full swing, enabling school children to enjoy what is now one of the safest and most inspiring art museums in the world.

Contact CADFAS


Chair : Lyn Atkinson / | Mobile: 027 601 6688 | Home 03 314 6163

Deputy Chair & Programme Secretary : Jackie Watson | Mobile 022 3509 547 | Home 03 312 6413