New Works 2016 is comprised of two groupings – paintings and ceramics - each with much in common.
Zena Elliott and Nigel Brown are united by the plural construction of identity and culture. Both are using metaphor. Elliott’s visual language uses pattern and colour dynamics and the formalities of architectural shaping. Brown recasts his (once) archetypical conqueror and exploiter of the environment as one who now cares for and nurtures it.
Michael Hight’s starkly silhouetted, dream-state, surreal expositions of Stewart Island (Rakiura) resonate with sharply inflected particularities. Justin Borough uses contradiction and contrast, the processes of neglect, decay and context, to commence a sequence of questions about what we value and how we come to see what is actually going on.
Central to both Bridie Henderson and Emily Siddell’s acclaimed works have been an extended, inventive necklace series, each quite different in character and treatment. These contain numerous cultural metaphors and symbols. Each is imbued with emotion, memory and hope.
John Parker’s Grooved Orbs are quintessential objects that function in space, harnessing the air about them and containing profound visual rhythms that seem to rise and fall.
Katherine Smyth talks back to Nigel Brown’s environmental dialogues in works that eloquently combine the virtues of portraiture and the whimsy of singular personality.