Pagework no.30

Liv Worsnop after Zen Walks 2016 (from the Minute Magnitudes series)

Liv Worsnop after Zen Walks 2016 (from the Minute Magnitudes series)

Each quarter the Gallery commissions an artist to create a new work of art especially for Bulletin. It’s about actively supporting the generation of new work.


Although Liv Worsnop’s work of recent years could loosely be described as focused on the regeneration of post-quake Christchurch, her subtle gestures and modest interventions are a world away from the authoritarian dominance of the official response, as symbolised by the CCDU’s 100-day blueprint. Together with members of the ‘Plant Gang’, a volunteer guerrilla gardening coalition she founded, Worsnop has paid small, but meaningful, attentions to sites left vacant and barren by earthquake demolition, using this practice as a way to connect with and make sense of an irrevocably changed environment. Encouraging the ‘rewilding’ of the CBD through cataloguing and seed collection projects, she has celebrated the persistence and diversity of the weeds that have returned to the city, taking tenuous hold amongst the dirt and rubble.

The multiple refracted and layered views of after Zen Walks – many captured while Worsnop was scouting locations for her Zen Garden project of 2013 – echo the intentions of her wider practice; highlighting how new perspectives and discreet manipulations can subtly adjust the experience of our surroundings. There’s something appealingly ambiguous about that word ‘minute’ in her series title too, which suggests alterations modest in both time and scale. Like so much of Worsnop’s work, it’s about notice paid and care taken and about finding beauty and strength in unexpected places.

‘Pagework’ has been generously supported by an anonymous donor.