Past Exhibitions

Terry Stringer

Such Stuff

15 Mar - 11 Apr 2024

Exhibition Works

Pro Parrot Art
Pro Parrot Art (2023)
Perceived Advantage
Perceived Advantage (2023)
Offered Up to Posterity
Offered Up to Posterity (2023)
Going Home
Going Home (2023)
Reliquary Head
Reliquary Head (2023)
Warrior Tomb
Warrior Tomb (2023)
Venus and Cupid
Venus and Cupid (2023)
Archimboldo Mask
Archimboldo Mask (2020)

Exhibition Text

Colin McCahon said Stringer’s work “strove to unite disparate parts.” Once Terry Stringer heard this he could see it was true.

In Such Stuff – an ensemble exhibition of small-scale sculptures – Stringer presents portions of the human body as narrative vehicles, combining a number of ideas within and alongside themselves.

Venus and Cupid (2023) is an example of Stringer’s consummate mastery of assemblage: three figures coalesce in a common space and by association imply a larger story. A woman, dressed as a late 4 BCE Greek mould-cast Tanagra figurine, is presented like an icon - her flesh seen as cut-outs in the drapery. In the foreground, a child’s head and the silhouette of a bird establish a sharply contrasting sequence of flat images.

Reliquary Head (2023) continues Stringer’s career-long conversation about built architecture, Christianity, spirituality and votive offerings to a saint or divinity given in fulfilment of a vow. Conflating together the architecture of a shrine and the head, Stringer delivers inset relief vignettes of body portions, devotional scenes and prayer offerings.

In a suite of four inter-related works Stringer utilises the symbolic framing of columns and arches to build a theatrical stage where image and object, words and letters form associations which unite and/or separate when viewed from a different position. The zig-zag form of Pro Parrot Art (2023) delivers three subjects and three words. Fingers reach for fruit amongst leaves (PRO), a kea spreads its wings (ARRO), a face peeps out (ART written across it). In Perceived Advantage (2023) a head and a hand create a recessing shape with an undulating edge. In the centre, there is a reversed pyramid with a chair drawn across its sides. Viewed frontally, the work recomposes itself to one where the chair becomes upright, standing inside a room, thereby suggesting the head has grasped a thought. In Offered Up to Posterity (2023) a head shape is divided into a face and a hand by a void which contains a still life apple on a shelf. Going Home (2023) contains a domestic interior overlaid on a young face. In this, Stringer reprises the tradition of a nostalgic image combining a comforting homily.

In Archimboldo Mask (2020) two hands encircle an apple, one hand seeming to press the apple into the possession of the other. Three multiple images predominate in Warrior Tomb (2023) a wreath of leaves, a comforting hand, a youthful head looking back.