Taking place over two floors, Studio 9A introduces Francis van Hout to the gallery for the first time. In works possessing a dexterous and noticeably certain visual language he crafts plural symbols and sensations of night, space and place. Evoking rock drawings, abstracted bird and human forms, and the discourse of dreams, his works are momentously simple and remarkably complete.
Aaron Scythe intervenes and recreates, delivering a decoratively broad array of ceramic pots, bowls, bottles and plates. Using pattern, relief and the history of ceramic practice Scythe introduces a breadth of expression and joy, and a preparedness to disrupt and to investigate, that is noticeably rare and assured.
In a major development in her practice, Tania Patterson has upscaled her bird boxes, building a metaphorical stage where iconic native birds stand and address us. Garry Currin places into the landscape a sacred place: as if a container for a shrine, a church or temple. Arresting time and mankind’s transitory presence, Currin builds hymns of absence and presence.
In an important work directly referencing a traditional counting or drinking folk song and a children’s nursery rhyme, and the ‘blossom’ architectural patterning common in New Zealand villas, Elizabeth McClure’s sand carved Entwine (2020) functions like a panoramic landscape while honouring the importance of everyday things. Harnessing the mutability of light, demonstrating her extraordinary engraving skills, a narrative emerges about pollination, the environment, recycling and transformation.
Four new twisting tonal ribbons from Christine Cathie sit alongside three important cloaks by Te Rongo Kirkwood. Hannah Kidd’s acclaimed mastery of corrugated iron is again demonstrated in the Take Flight series.
Jenna Packer uses the stark contrasts and visual contradictions of the ornate maize-like garden in a natural landscape shown to show a state of perilous and contested flux. She poses considerable questions about what we say we value and what we actually do.