This exhibition highlights contemporary New Zealand art from artists new to the gallery as well as those who are critically acknowledged as significant.
Ralph Hotere is one of New Zealand’s pre-eminent artists. Working in and with glass throughout his extensive career, Winter Solstice demonstrates Hotere’s masterful use of stained glass. Its symbolism encompasses two major bodies of work, the Winter Solstice and Matauri Bay series.
Robert Ellis is a respected senior painter whose reputation is based on his highly resolved, graphic and stylised depiction of the New Zealand landscape. Hakihea/December describes an aerial perspective of the land and more specifically Maungawhau (Mt Eden), within which Ellis has embedded metaphoric emblems that reveal his interest in the relationships between Maori and Pakeha.
Jeffrey Harris commands a wide range of media and styles. The freshness, intensity and originality of these meticulous figurative drawings from the early 1970s are still evident today. As expressive compositions of line and shape, these drawings offer a complexity of personal revelations.
Renowned contemporary sculptor Neil Dawson continues to manipulate perspective and form, instigating illusions and transformations in his latest work Feather Sweep – Yellow. Leading narrative artist Nigel Brown employs symbolic and expressionistic approaches with an instinctive deep social concern in the poignant Fred and Myrtle Flutey. The substantially modified or altered landscapes of Michael Hight and Callum Arnold contrast sharply with Bruce Hunt’s topographical panoramic vistas of the Otago landscape. Neil Frazer offers a revolutionary sculptural interpretation of our rugged and energetic South Island mountain-scapes with energetic and sumptuous layers of impasto paint. Peter James Smith and Elizabeth Rees paint landscapes layered with meaning and imbued with an awareness of time, place and history.
New to our gallery include photographer Doc Ross whose striking images capture the intensity of nature; sculptor Megan Huffadine employs illusionistic realism in a medley of meticulously detailed forms which reflect her ongoing research of the human need to gather and revere small objects; Hannah Kidd’s remarkably accurate sculptural creations are informed by her investigation of people and the relationships they have with their surrounding environment; John Ecuyer works with a variety of native and exotic timbers to create exquisitely detailed Pacific-themed vessels embellished with a variety of materials such as brass, silver, copper, paua and pearl shell.
Other key artists featured include Claudia Borella, Christine Boswijk, Garry Currin, Simon Edwards, Harry Faulkner, Dick Frizzell, Niki Hastings-McFall, Juliette Milne, Simon Ogden, JS Parker and Johnny Turner.