21 October 2011

15 June 2011


Quite possibly the first memory I have of visiting an art gallery was attending the opening of an international photography show at the Govett-Brewster as an emerging and awkward teenager ca. 1985. We’d purloined tickets through my father’s business being stockists of the sponsors – Kodak, from memory. I don’t remember a lot – wearing a black and white shirt, lots of people and stairs, a glimpse into a world that equally awed and terrified me.

Somewhere along the line it must have impacted though, subsequently acquiring, as I did, a degree in art history, a job at the Govett-Brewster for a fashion, quite a few pieces of and books about art, and an insight into a world that still equally awes and terrifies me.

I was reminded of all this on Saturday, when we took Jasper to the Cafe Govett-Brewster for a celebratory birthday fluffy (him) and to check out the new exhibitions (us). He went in armed with his new modern take on an Etch-a-Sketch (birthday present), with which we drew a bunny rabbit in honour of Peter Peryer’s Hare, and an upside down ship which was still installed from the previous show.

We bravely ventured into Gallery 4, which previously held the ‘bouncy castle’ – much feared because of its loud noise – to see Fiona Pardington’s new works The Pressure of Sunlight Falling, and nervously and hastily looked beyond the barrier ropes and into the darkened spaces that were still in changeover, before retreating to the safety of the main gallery via a lift ride.

On leaving, the half-dozen or so gallery staff present in and around the foyer delivered a stunning rendition of Happy Birthday to a very chuffed, if slightly shy, birthday boy.

One day I hope to look back and be able to think to myself “that was when it all began.”
Image: http://www.itstrulyrandom.com/

14 April 2011


Yes it was an April 1 product launch from ThinkGeek, but as a former Playmobil and current Apple users, I've got to admit that a Playmobil Apple Store holds quite a lot of appeal.
Particularly so given Taranaki recently lost its only real-ish Apple store and my kids (still getting used to saying that) are likely going to be spending quite a bit of time in Apple Stores in the future.    

21 January 2011


Good news.

I recall a comment once made by an art dealer as to where contemporary New Zealand art sits in the purchasing priority list your average non-addicted customer - generally somewhere just behind upgrading your fully functioning washing machine. So in the darker economic times we live in, where washing machines are both heavily discounted and available on 40 months interest free terms, you could be forgiven for thinking that the primary art market would be toughing things out at the moment.

But not so, judging by the latest Big Idea jobs + opportunities newsletter. No less than four dealer galleries - Bartley & Co, Page Blackie, Masterworks and Milford Galleries are all recruiting, pointing to either a positive end to the Old Year or a pretty credible prediction of growth in 2011.

Further underscoring this possible buoyancy, I've even heard of one dealer who ducks out to the stock room for a private yoga session each week.

The art world: awash with milk and honey.