New art is always arriving at Zimmerman Art Gallery - and this month is no exception. We're exhibiting new works by Angela Tier, Sean Crawford and Ian Chapman – on display now until Sunday 27 June. Come take a look!
Angela Tier - coiled stoneware sculptures:
"She does not know how, but they found her"
Tier's installation of three cat figures reflects on the feelings experienced on receiving a diagnosis of terminal illness. The relationship between the figures is a reminder of the mortal cycle of birth, life, and death; the child-like winged spirits stand ready to guide the central mother figure on a journey from which she will not return.
Angela Tier - photographic image:
"She who haunts me"
In the photographic portrait "She who haunts me" the artist reflects on the desire, from our colonial past, to import exotic birds to New Zealand.
The peacock, in particular, is symbolically associated with vanity; the character of which is reflected in the model's haughty expression and pose. The majestic, exotic feathers adorn her like an elaborate cloak, a pelt she wears with pride, reflecting her thoughts as to her social status.
The work can be viewed as a reflection on attitudes from times past, and their relevance and place today.
Sean Crawford – steel sculptures:
"Lost in Translation"
Direct from the studio of Wairarapa artist Sean Crawford are three new wall-mounted steel sculptures:
- "Kowhai" features a standard Police issue glock, fashioned from yellow kowhai flowers.
- "Whero" is a stylised section of a prison door, composed from bright red pohutukawa blooms.
- "Kikorangi" takes the form of a surveillance camera, fabricated from kopakopa (Chatham Island forget-me-nots).
The artist says "I remember, as a school aged child, my introduction to learning Maori. Being taught colours was a cultural gateway to understanding. Within this series of works, I have approached that colour reference as ‘primary swatches’, blocks of colour that pass their reference point without misinterpretation.
I have chosen to use botanical motifs in these works to highlight an innocent exchange, native flower to colour. As the flowers become corrupted in form and meaning, they are subverted to shapeshift into objects of oppression. These manifestations (or distortions) reflect a reality of restriction, repression and persecution, as humanness becomes ‘lost in translation’.”
Ian Chapman – new paintings: celebrating curves!
Rounding out the featured works this month are the quirky and colourful paintings of Ian Chapman. Recently Chapman discovered Hilda, a "plus-size pin-up girl" who gingered up American calendars from the 1950s to the 1980s. Created by illustrator Duane Bryers, the rambunctious redhead was a fun and energetic country girl, not at all shy about her plump body and often engaged in innocent escapades.
In Chapman's hands, the voluptuous leading lady features in the most surreal situations, yet seems blissfully unaware of the strangeness of her curious – and often dangerous - circumstances.
In "Two Can Play at That Game", the shapely swinging lady is airily held aloft by a king-sized toucan. But just what will happen to our suspended star, when the big-billed bird opens his great beak?
In another uncommon scene, "Don't Look Down", a bikini-clad babe focuses on balancing upside-down on a tortoise shell. So intense is her concentration she seems unaware of the golden snub-nosed monkey perched on her feet ... or of the gravity-defying feat of the tortoise beneath her, steadying himself on four spindly stands.
And when night falls, we might expect our adventurous heroine to at last be safely tucked up in bed. Instead, the red-haired vixen appears to be staying up late, reading from a well-thumbed copy of Fox in Socks, to an enormous fox who has comfortably curled himself around her fleshy thighs …
Gallery open hours are 11am to 3pm Thursday to Sunday - come take a look!