29 March 2007

Fun raising

The good old Kiwi No. 8 wire approach was demonstrated beautifully this week at, of all places, City Gallery. Amidst a well lubricated and very interesting fund raising event to help the lovely Racheal Rakena and Brett Graham get their work Aniwaniwa to Venice, it was revealed that they artists had packed sleeping bags into the shipping container along with the work, just in case the fundraising effort didn't quite stretch to cover artist's accommodation.

Pic: Elaborate mobile home, Waitarere.

27 March 2007


Kevin Roberts, some-time art collector, love-mark (presumedly not the neck-located variety) advocate, and global head of Saatchi and Saatchi has joined the weblog echo-chamber. I wonder if he'll do a business card for his blog, and if so if it will feature the oulines of a rugby field on the reverse.

"Join today and talk it up"

RIP: a little slice of signage history

With Sunday's opening of the Southbound lanes of the Inner City Bypass, the changing of the traffic flow on Vivian street, and the mass confusion this seems to have reigned on the motorists of Wellington, a wee slice of Wellington's signage history has been quietly lost.
I was a great fan of the giant faded Champion Sparkplug sign, and the wonderful associations with a bygone era of motoring. It reminded me of a summer spent restoring an old Peugeot 404 with my father, a pile of beautifully illustrated 1950's Life magazines I got from one of the now extinct second-hand book warrens on Cuba Street when I first moved to Wellington, and endless runs to Midnight Espresso to drink black coffee and debate art at some late hour when we should have been asleep.
And what pinnacle of the advertising world have we gained in its place?
A billboard advertising billboards.
I don't think we're in Auckland anymore, Toto.

21 March 2007

Collecting art: the new black

About three years ago I attended a series of seminars at City Gallery that looked at collecting contemporary art. These were pitched as an introductory lesson in two installments - collectors discussing what, why, and how they collected (main theme = see and read about as much art as you can), and local dealers discussing their involvement in the collecting process (main theme = build a relationship with your dealer). On the whole I got a bit out of both events, and have since travelled the world in search of great art, read a lot, bought a lot of art (see above), though I am still working on that great relationship with one dealer (Larry - why won't you return my calls?)

The series is revisited this and next week as part of the Prospect exhibition, with fresh new branding (STart - isn't the capitalisation in the wrong place?) a fresh new booking and paying process (through VUW's continuing education (interesting) at $30 a head for both events - last time was free) and no doubt a fresh new lineup.

Given the recent and frequent media sensationalism of the global art market, it's record prices (all at auction), and the recent high-profile launch of art+object, it will be very interesting to see whether this rounds dealer panel will include a representative of the auction industry, and whether the issue of reselling/buying on the secondary market comes up at all.

Pict: John Reynolds The New Black, 2006, ed. 13

19 March 2007

Playing with food.

Following on from the article in the Dom last week about 96-year-old Archie Holmes and his mutant carrot, I once dug a slightly less impressive example out of a garden I was minding in New Plymouth.
As Peter Peryer has shown in recent posts about the fruits of his impressive garden, New Plymouth is conducive to growing some amazing things. We have a cutting from Peter's garden growing on our kitchen bench in Wellington. It's doing very well despite it's geographic displacement.

15 March 2007

Well someone had to...

Left: article from Dominion Post this morning
Right: Cosmo, Michael Parekowhai, from online article in Art Australia on the Jim Barr and Mary Barr collection.

If you lived here, you'd be home by now

The great thing about living in an inner city apartment is that you very rarely get to see the outside fo the building. This is a good, if not completely self-centred thing, when your building happens to be terracotta orange, probably a hangover from the early 90s when it was transformed from the Government Print Warehouse to it's current apartment layout. A lot to answer for, the 90s.
As of this evening, we'll have erased one of the few remaining vestiges of the 90s on the interior - the lurid pink doors. We've gone white in a thinly veiled attempt to turn the apartment into an art gallery.
And don't worry, I'll get over the whole playing with 'photoshop to make everything look like a model' thing soon. No thanks to Oliver Barbieri.

14 March 2007

When all else fails

A couple of weeks ago I finally got round to reading the instruction manual that came with the digital camera I bought mid last year. I'd been having lots of fun with the camera, but now I'm starting to get some results that are a bit more interesting. I'm still light years away from the artists I really admire and whose work I'm (very) slowly acquiring, but the more I learn the more I want to learn.
A couple of recent experiments above - Auckland's motorway and the road out to Pencarrow Head, with just a little bit of Photoshopping.

6 views of a hangover that never was

An unfamiliar bedroom, a rare opportunity to sleep in, a late late night, a few glasses of wine more than normal, a camera left next to the bed, and the false belief that the 4 people who monitor this blog want to see my mother in law's spare bedroom ceiling.

On a vaguely related note, I was particularly taken with Yvonne Todd's work 3 beige garments in the Govett-Brewster's recent Break:Construct show (image here but you'll have to scroll down).

And in relation to that, Peter McLeavey's gallery appears to reopen this week. Danger, Will Robinson.

08 March 2007

Visual notes from the Tom Kreisler opening

Retail fatigue

Two of my favourite shops, ECC and Backhouse, have sales on until Saturday. I managed to demonstrate an unprecedented level of self restraint and visit both without buying anything. Odd.
Pic: Signage readymade on Tory St.

06 March 2007

Ping Pong Country

On again this Wednesday at the Mighty Mighty: Ping Pong Country. As much fun as it sounds, and well worth the excursion.