Loose Canvas

30 May – 11 July 1981

From the late 50s many New Zealand painters have chosen to make paintings which dispensed with the traditional stretcher and frame. Some continued to paint on canvas while others preferred rough jute, large sheets of paper, sheet plastic and in recent years, a range of synthetic materials. The dispensing of frames and stretchers allowed the artist to work more rapidly as ideas developed and in time the special qualities of irregular loose canvas edges and the gentle movement in the air became an essential part of the work. By working on loose canvas artists were able to increase the size of their works, joining large sheets of canvas together, often adding relief to the surface, extending the painting the full length of a six foot high roll of canvas.

This exhibition presents a collection of paintings by Trusttum, McCahon, Clairmont, Hotere and a very large recent work by Don Peebles, each work showing how the artist approaches and uses their selected loose painting support and how they choose to manipulate this loose support to extend their concept of the painting.

('Loose Canvas', Bulletin, No.15, May/June 1981, p.5)