Pauline Rhodes

Aotearoa New Zealand, b.1937

Untitled (Towards Two Squares)

  • 1979
  • Collage, rust imprint, crayon and pencil on paper
  • 390 x 565mm
  • 81/38

These works on paper exist as traces of temporary interventions that prominent Ōtautahi artist Pauline Rhodes has made at different times in the landscape. Here, rust stains paper, interacting with marks made with graphite that suggest movement through space. Rhodes responds directly to the landscape, to points where land and sea meet. Her object is not to produce permanent works of art, but to record the traces of her activity, making and unmaking sculpture in specific places. The making of the work is the product of an intimate and intense habitation of space, in order to gain a new understanding of the landscape and what it means to be a ‘consciousness’ in motion within it.

(Te Wheke, 2020)

Exhibition History

earlier labels about this work
  • This collage is an exploration of time, an important element in all Pauline Rhodes’ work. What we see are the visual traces left behind by objects that are now absent. The work has been made by layering squares of paper, which have been stained or imprinted with rust and drawn upon with crayon and pencil. It is an example of Process Art, in which emphasis is placed on the process of transformation and on the materials used, rather than on subject or meaning. Process Art was a movement that flourished in the United States and Europe from the mid-1960s to the mid-1970s. Rhodes was born in Christchurch and lived in Wellington, Westport, Nigeria and England before returning to Christchurch to live in 1970. She completed a Diploma of Fine Arts in Sculpture at the University of Canterbury in 1974. Rhodes has exhibited regularly in New Zealand and internationally since the early 1980s. In 1987 she was the first-ever recipient of the Olivia Spencer Bower Award.