The OUSA Art Week saw the ‘Salon des femmes’ make an appearance at the Red Thread Gallery on 6 August, 2015. My work for this pop up show was documentation of an intervention at the art school a few weeks earlier on the day of a seminar on art and climate change. Printed paper towels with subtle messages about climate change were inserted into the paper towel dispensers in all the DSA public toilets.
A group show with the Salon des Femmes in association with the Dunedin Fringe Festival 2015 at Mint Gallery, Moray Place, Dunedin from the 6th – 19th March. Each artist responded to the notion of ‘shadow self’ taken from the essay ‘Professions for Women’ by Virginia Woolf.[Heading Nowhere] in a Navy Blue Suit, screenprints on Somerset Velvet paper, 28x76cm
The title is from an essay by Sue Kedgley that refers to women’s failed attempt to fit into a male corporate world. The shadow self is seen as what we deem to unconsciously deny in ourselves yet there are many women in history who have stood their ground. I recall playing dress ups as a young girl. Whether idolising screen stars or venerating the prowess of women through a myriad of media images, the notion of ‘dressing up’ allows the freedom to slip into anecdotes of the imagination and ultimately this affects our future. There are many legendary women that impact on our lives. Who has influenced yours?
IMPressive V – Wansolwara: Print here and now
Nathan Homestead, Manurewa, Auckland, 28 October – 30 November, 2014
New Zealand Steel Gallery, Franklin Arts Centre, Pukekohe. 24 January – 24 February, 2015
Every inked image participates in a migration like shift from its start point, be that a plate, block, screen or file, to place(s) where it will be seen. The printed image sits on a new ground, always in the here and now, separated from, yet connected to its origins. All of us here in Aotearoa carry the legacy of recent or long distant migrations to the land of the long white cloud. We are connected to, and separated from, the rest of the world by salt water. We live close to the sea, it nourishes us, connects us to home and opens us up to discovery. The word ‘wansolwara’ comes from the Solomon Islands. The word comes from the pidgin dialect and literally means ‘one salt water’. The notion arising from this is one ocean, one people.
Along with the original, the coasters show the additions of the dairy cow, the for sale sign, the milk treatment plant and the swallows.
Navigating the aisles of mostly Chinese imported goods, I came across coasters reminding me of ‘Willow Pattern’ dinnerware. Originating in England, the willow pattern traditionally imitates a Chinese landscape and represents the first journey of migration. The coasters reveal no trace of origin on the packaging or coaster, but I assume, ironically, that they are a Chinese import, therefore a second migration. The coasters have undergone a further migration with the intervention of screenprinted imagery showing dairy farming, with a milk treatment plant looming large in the background. This alludes to Chinese investment here in New Zealand, depicting yet another form of migration. The swallows, appropriated from the common willow pattern design, are said to represent lovers. China / New Zealand relations have been somewhat contentious of late. Also too, the ‘coaster’ aptly refers to one living by the sea.
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.
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.