Les morgue des ouvres

The book morgue

An exhibition of the book as art object curated by Michaela and Olivia (2nd year students from the Print Studio aka P Lab) at Dutybound bookbindery, Dunedin, October 2014. The show coincides with the Art+Book symposium and the Otago Arts Festival. It was great to see so many people about on the day of the Dunedin Street Art Festival. My work, Dreamwork, also featured in the exhibition.

book morgue book morguewp2 book morguewp3

street fest

Art + Book

Art + Book Symposium Dunedin School of Art October 16-18 2014

An exhibition and two days of papers and discussion from those engaged in art and book – as artists, art historians or theorists, teachers and cultural workers, and others involved in the wide constituency of the artworld, as well as those engaged in the world of books.

I presented a paper – The Book as Art Object–A Remedial Reading and had a work from my master’s show The evolution of Industry in the exhibition.


Remedial, in this context, applies to the definition of curative or affording a remedy. The concept of Kazimir Malevich’s pharmacy, a term coined from his essay ‘On the Museum’ in 1919 in response to the impending destruction of Russian museums and art collections by civil, political and economic unrest, is contemplated as a vitalising agency in the transformative character of the burnt book as art object.

Book burning has an unscrupulous history and is regarded as a crime against culture. Is this a culture defined by the achievements or failures of our civilised industrial world, a world facing environmental, social, and economic crisis? However, within our current digitised culture does the physical act of book burning evince concern among die-hard bibliophiles and is the notion of the pharmacy able to offer amnesty? This paper will introduce and analyse the ideas and methods of artists who acknowledge book burning in their art practice and conclude by forging connections between their work and the prudent nature of Malevich’s pharmacy.



Salon des femmes got together for a one night show in association with OUSA Art Week. The exhibition theme was a response to the word ‘compact’ and was held in a small entry foyer leading to art studio spaces on 140 George St.

compact to make more dense; compress; condense
condensation Psychology The process by which a single symbol or word is associated with the emotional content of several, not necessarily related ideas, feelings, memories, or impulses, especially as expressed in dreams.

Dream work






The reagent bottle containing the charcoal remains of Sigmund Freud’s book The Interpretation of Dreams, symbolises suppressed hopes and dreams.





Dream work with Becs’ Maquettes I-V 

Check out Salon des femmes for more images.

Oil on Canvas

On Friday 10th January the ‘Oil on Canvas’ exhibition opened at the Dunedin Community Gallery. Artists from all over the country displayed their works, exploring the theme of deep sea drilling in Aotearoa.

My work for this show included a series of nine prints with drawings using a ‘kitchen lithography’ process that works on the basis that oil and water doesn’t mix. The imagery played out a noughts and crosses game where x = water and o = oil. Either had the chance to win but water was given the victory in the final image. The drawing sketches made reference to Hieronymous Bosch’s painting ‘The ship of fools’.


Along with this print series was a found object, sculptural work from my first year sculpture project, consisting of an old petrol can with an Arabian proverb written in reverse and a car rear view mirror lying beside the can to make the proverb comprehensible.

The proverb reads: 

    “My father rode a camel. I drive a car. My son flies a jet-plane. His son will ride a camel.” 


Sculpture on the Peninsula

Carbon boots

Carbon Boots, Recycled, pulped newspaper, fabric and clay transformed into charcoal. 19 x 24 x 32 cm each pair x 7

Carbon Boots, charcoal, 19 x 24 x 32 cm each pair x 7. Situated on the historic Louden homestead verandah.

Sculpture on the Peninsula is a biennial event that takes place at the historic Louden Farm, Teddington on Christchurch’s Banks Peninsula. The event is a weekend fundraiser for Cholmondeley in Governor’s Bay and is hosted by the Lombardy Charitable Trust.

Work boots are regarded as possessing a tough, reliable durability, offering comfort and trusted protection. They are synonymous with the physical production associated with the manual labourer working on the land or employed in industry. Increasingly, however, work boots represent the human contact with the earth in the rescue and rehabilitation of environmental damage. Through concerns that our living world is in crisis, the fragile Carbon boots are created from recycled newspaper and transformed into charcoal works that retain the carbon content in the newspaper. The ephemerality of charcoal communicates the impermanence of life and the reality of human existence in a consumerist world.

Opening night 8 November 2013

Opening night 8 November 2013

Also among the fifty-five artists taking part in the event were friends, Jane Armour and Liz Rowe whose works feature below.


Jane Armour

Jane Armour

Liz Rowe

Liz Rowe

other echoes

Midden life crisis

other echoes at the Dunedin Botanic Gardens

other echoes at the Dunedin Botanic Gardens

‘other echoes’ – a group show curated by Jamie Hanton in association with the Blue Oyster Art Project Space with support from  the Dunedin Botanic Gardens and the Dunedin City Council.

The artists involved in the show created interventions within chosen spaces of the Gardens. Cath Cocker’s ‘playful’ Watershed was situated near the children’s playground while Clare Fleming chose the Eucalyptus tree section to comment on her trans Tasman connections. Charlotte Parallel introduced mini man-made mineral laboratories able to withstand arid conditions in the rock garden, while the information centre was inhabited with the ornithological study of a ‘rare’ bird by Nina van der Voorn.

My work, Midden life crisis, was situated inside the herb garden. A one metre, circular pit was dug out and filled with the gasified, charcoal remains of seeds. For the duration of the show, the pit was constantly monitored and topped up with the cyclic harvest and charcoal making of more seeds as they came to fruition. The herb garden allows for sampling and so I expected some seeds would be taken away or would be subjected to the elements. Their delicate composition meant they also crushed easily. The two month long exhibition made me acutely aware of the changing seasons in being on the constant lookout for ripened seeds. I saw this work as a sustainable project that reflects on human dependence and finite use of fossil fuels and the desperate need to take action in seeking alternative energy sources.

Installation in the herb garden

Installation in the herb gardenThe week after the openingMidden life crisis, 2013. The week after the opening

On the opening day of the exhibition which coincided with the Garden’s 150th celebrations, I held a charcoal drawing workshop with my home made charcoal. It was a fun day with messy, black fingers everywhere!

Midden life crisis (detail)

Midden life crisis (detail)

Midden poppy Midden tree peony

Midden gumnuts

Midden life crisis, 2013

Midden life crisis, 2013

Art & Money


Following four highly successful symposia held at the Dunedin School of Art – ‘Illustrating the Unseeable: Reconnecting Art and Science’ (2009), ‘Art and Law’ (2010) ‘Art and Medicine’ (2011), and ‘Art and Food’ (2012) – the Dunedin School of Art and Brandbach organised a further Symposium, ‘Art and Money’, in August 2013.

The symposium included an exhibition at the Dunedin School of Art gallery.

Installation view 'Art & Money' with works by Pamela Brown and Kerry McKay (foreground), Blair Kennedy and Andrea McSweeney, Marion Wassenaar, and Andrew Hurle

Installation view ‘Art & Money’ with works by Pamela Brown and Kerry McKay (foreground), Blair Kennedy and Andrea McSweeney, Marion Wassenaar, and Andrew Hurle

'withdrawn' 2013 ex library book and digital print, book size 13 x 22 x 14 cm, digital print 39 x 61 cm.

‘Withdrawn’ 2013

Withdrawn includes a digital reproduction taken from the original dust jacket of a retired library book. The hand written text below the image shows a summary of expenditure per capita that reveals the contrast between military expenditure and arts funding.

World military expenditure in 2012 is estimated to have been $249 per capita. Comparison of funding per capita by selected arts Councils and agencies: Arts Council of Wales, $17.80, 2012/2013; Arts Council of England, $13.54, 2010; Australian Council, $8.16, 2010/2011; Creative New Zealand, $2.98, 2009/2010; National Endowment for the Arts USA, $0.47, 2012

On a shelf, directly beneath the image, sits the the library book reduced to a carbon shell.

Withdrawn, 2013

Withdrawn, 2013, ex library book and digital print, book size 13 x 22 x 14 cm, digital print 39 x 61 cm

Art & Neuroscience

Group show of artist and scientist collaborations

The Brain Health Centre, Hunter Centre, University of Otago, Dunedin – 22 July – 9 August 2013

A collaboration along with scientist Dr Lucia Schoderbock and artist Kristin Peren

Slide 1

Slide 1

Baby’s first steps…or the scent of jonquils as a harbinger of spring… these are memories we treasure in life that connect our past to the present and define our identity. But what happens when memories fade – seized through brain injury or disease and get frozen in time? Both Kristin and Marion grew up in a period when family slide shows were a nostalgic reminder of days gone by. The Slide series revisions the slide format with manipulated images sourced from Lucia’s research on adult neurogenesis in memory formation and retrieval.

Our senses were filled with wonder, free to wander, to imagine.

Slide 4 in mount

Slide 4 in mount

Images 46 x 69cm digitally printed on Hahnemeule paper. Edition of five. Framed 100 x 100 cm

Lucia gave us the opportunity to photograph her laboratory slides through the microscope. These images relate to her research on the rescue of memory after brain injury. The encounter was both insightful and hopeful. This was a fascinating and surreal experience resulting in a printed series of manipulated images.

Lucia's slide of the microscopic neurons of the brain

A detail of Lucia’s slide showing neurons in the brain

See the EyeContact review.