This article first appeared as 'Painting offers a multiverse of symbols' in The Press on 21 June 2017.
Sometimes Going Back Is A Way Of Going Forward
John Stezaker is an English conceptual artist, acknowledged as a significant influence on the YBA generation. He has been working since the mid-1970s, while achieving international acclaim for his work in the past fifteen years. His exhibition Lost World opens at Christchurch Art Gallery in March 2018. He spoke to senior curator Lara Strongman on a visit to Aotearoa New Zealand in August 2017.
I’ve loved art as long I can remember. Growing up, my home was full of art and ever since it’s always been a part of my life. My favourite piece is Chapman’s Homer, especially because the whole city got behind the campaign to buy it for our city. I joined the Foundation board in February 2015 and love the work the Foundation is involved in. I was a part of the group that visited London in July and saw Bridget Riley’s work. The trip was life-changing and I absolutely can’t wait to see what she decides to do for Christchurch.
The Gallery has an incredible team of forty Volunteer Guides – and we want more! We’re currently seeking expressions of interest for ten enthusiastic individuals to join us.
In early March we were lucky enough to have the incredibly talented Grayson Gilmour performing at the Gallery, supported by the equally talented Purple Pilgrims and New Dawn. I love these gigs, but there is a lot of work to be done behind the scenes to make sure that, by the time the public walk in the door, the foyer is gig ready. The process normally feels like a long, slow marathon with a sprint at the final corner. So here’s a guide to how you too can get the NZI Foyer gig-ready in five (or six) easy steps.
Pickaxes and Shovels
See the lives of the early settlers and Kāi Tahu tangata whenua in this selection of extraordinary works by frontier Pākehā artists.
This luminous pastoral scene was painted at Silverstream; in the Hutt Valley within easy reach from Wellington. It was here that Nairn and other artists rented Pumpkin Cottage, which can be seen in the background. The artists enjoyed travelling from Wellington to paint the countryside outdoors, or plein-air, and develop their interests in impressionism. Nairn, who had trained and worked as a professional artist in Scotland, was very much the group’s leader and was instrumental in establishing the Wellington Art Club in 1892 as an alternative to the more conservative New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts. (March 2018)