16 December 2013

True Hollywood Stories.

Is it still a conspiracy when it's been there all along?

Tune in next week as we reveal the shocking extent to which Len Lye has infiltrated not just the Govett-Brewster, but almost every art gallery in the world!

The passing of time.

The official record gets all wild and crazy, Christmas lights are
strewn across the façade and Len heads to Auckland.

25 November 2013

Shine on.

The first walls are going in but not the shiny ones, yet.

02 October 2013

Wait staff.

And in the provincial capital they waited for visible progress.

25 September 2013


It's action stations as more concrete and steel goes in, further offshore
appointments are alluded to, and a raft of local government hopefuls
seek to score easy runs by heaping scorn on the project. Seems it's
easier to be defined by what you're against than what you stand for.

18 September 2013

Celebrity endorsement

New signs go up and the famous are enlisted via You Tube to build momentum
ahead of what could be a challenging few months, if a protesting council
candidate at the recent foundation (little f) ceremony is any indication.

16 September 2013

27 August 2013

200,000 x zero is still zero.

As art collecting makes the Herald's Personal Finance supplement,
I'm reminded of a joke my 6th form maths teacher used to recount:
"One of my students came to me at the end of the year and said
'Thank you, I now know 100 times what I did at the start of the year!'
"What did you know at the start of the year?" the teacher responded.

23 August 2013

Action stations.

Apparently this afternoon we'll see some action, with diggers
due to arrive once the ground's dried out a bit.
"But it never rains in Taranaki," I said, to be met with a weak smile.
 In other news, the visual arts have apparently 'arrived' as NP is flooded with
not one but two pop-up galleries pop up. Be careful out there, kids. 

20 August 2013

Behind the scenes.

They're "almost ready to start the building phase in earnest" but it's
all go in New Plymouth.

07 August 2013

Contain your excitement.

Other than a shipping container appearing on site, little to report this week.
Broadcasts may be intermittent as OMC is lured to the fun of the fair.

02 August 2013

Radio without pictures.

The site gains a construction worker sign, the gallery broadcasts
Shaun Mallon at this week's Monica Brewster Club lecture, and
the former director is delivered safely by a cast of thousands.

26 July 2013

Foundation course.

Little to report on the construction front, though the building of
foundations are reportedly imminent.

19 July 2013

And all was well.

Going by the archaeological report, progress this week could
either be said to be going well or be a pile of rubbish.
Twelve piles of rubbish, to be precise.

12 July 2013

Art to lunch.

As Ryan Ballinger completes his homage to the gallery's closure, the
director is farewelled, and a new lunchtime series is launched,
progress focuses on the archaeology of the site.
Meanwhile, the café remains open.

09 July 2013

Come and see my etchings.

Progress continues to deepen, as 13 people sign up to have their names
permanently etched into the façade.

04 July 2013

The art of building a building of art.

Could the presence of a water tanker hint at a temporary installation
of Water Whirler in what could be an injection of art into the building
of an artful building to house art?

19 June 2013

Ground = Zero.

That stage in any project where it appears nothing much
is happening, but it probably is.

14 June 2013

Revert to source.

Days 28-30 of the Len Lye Centre build: that point in the
process where it could go either way between car park
and art gallery.

11 June 2013

Tomorrow we start school.

Back to where it all began.

Days 25-27 of the Len Lye Centre build.
The sun always shines on _____.

05 June 2013

31 May 2013

Hand job.

Ever since a career aptitude test in the 5th form determined I was destined to become a sign writer, I've had a wee thing for hand painted signage. 

As the last vestiges of the 1990s extension to the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery were torn down yesterday, it revealed some historic gallery branding - hand painted no less - the same day I came across a trailer for a movie to the humble art of painted signage.

SIGN PAINTERS (OFFICIAL TRAILER) from samuel j macon on Vimeo.

27 May 2013

The cafe remains open.

Days 16-18 (roughly).
Please note: the cafe remains open.

24 May 2013

45 hours and counting...

Team Bob are together again for another 48 hours of madness. Here's our last effort:

Puddle Finishing School, Part IV Church Protocol from Momentum Studios on Vimeo.

It would seem I'm writing the script and acting again.
You might call it a race against the clock...

20 May 2013

It's the little things.

Days 13-15, in which the signage and Paul Haritgan's Pathfinder were preserved.

15 May 2013

Making molehills out of mountains

Days 10-12, characterised by an impressive pile of rubble.

10 May 2013


Days 7-10. I've suggested that the signage is taken
down for some future fundraising purpose...

07 May 2013

The price of fame.

Days 3-6 of the Len Lye Centre build.

03 May 2013

3: Share your favourite food/meal and the story behind it

In central Wellington there’s a humble little Japanese restaurant, run by a humble little Korean man, down a humble little brick alleyway. There’s a humble little dish there called Katsudon –rice, egg, onions and a crumbed pork cutlet.

Over many years I’ve had this dish while sitting alongside lovers, workmates, family, friends, co-conspirators, innovators and artists. That one dish has been the start point for hours lost to passionate debate, nights lost to karaoke and days, if not weeks, lost to ideas and dreams sparked in that humble little restaurant.

2: Tell the story of your day in pictures

Left to right, top to bottom:
1.       Woken by a wailing two year old.
2.       Memory card games with the four year old before breakfast.
3.       Making 3 bowls of microwave porridge while feeling very Poppa Bear.
4.       The ride to work.
5.       A rarity these days: the tie.
6.       Driving to Stratford to submit to the Council. Cause of tie.
7.       An office-wide discussion about pancakes.
8.       New Zealand Music Month provides a soundtrack to a library visit.
9.       A chocolate cake randomly appears on the office table. Is consumed.
10.   The building across the road gets demolished.
11.   48 hour film festival team meeting.
12.   Excitedly perusing the latest Art+Object online catalogue.
13.   Reading back through 6 old Wallpaper magazines which I'm thinking of selling.
14.   Cutting my daughter’s hair in the bath.

So here goes.

Call it peer pressure, call it an emergence from the fog of parenting, or call it an attempt to vent, but it would seem I'm blogging again.  And what better way to kick things off than with a month-long blogging challenge.

Here's the first post. Hopefully I'll maintain some form of momentum.

1.    Playlist: Choose songs that mean something to you and tell us why.

Paul Simon, Boy in the Bubble (1986)

Paul Simon’s Graceland provided the soundtrack to one of those endless summers we all had as kids, the summer I got my first surfboard, and cruised the beaches of Mahia in my fluoro board shorts. Fun fact: Paul Simon would later marry Edie Brickell, who was a serious contender for this list in her own right, for similar reasons.

Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Organic Anti Beat Box Band

What is it about teenagers and movies? In my case it was Thrashin, a story of a country boy who moves to the city, wins the girl and the big skateboarding contest. It was a story of hope, dreams and beating the odds to achieve them. It was also a story that had a very young Red Hot Chilli Peppers playing live at a skate club. I dutifully mail ordered their latest tape – 1987’s Uplift Mofo Party Plan – from the back pages of a Thrasher magazine. It was a gateway drug, first into skatepunk, then to the broader alternative music genre.

Blur She’s So High

Later in my high school years, my art teacher/creative mentor/barometer of cool went to the UK for the summer holidays and came back buzzing over a new band he’d heard called Blur. He made me a mix tape (!) that featured their first single which had just hit the market – around 1990 I think. I traded this for the aforementioned Red Hot Chili Peppers tape. And that, kids, is how I got into indie. 

The Stone Roses, Fools Gold

A couple of years ago I rode a mountain bike 4 hours up a gold mining trail up a very large hill in the South Island. Fittingly, this was my earworm.

The Smiths, How soon is now?

I was a latecomer to the Smiths, who were pretty much a rite of passage for anyone with an older brother or sister when I was growing up. But from the moment I first heard the searing soaring guitar intro I was in catch-up mode. It’s the song that reminds me what technology has done for (or to) music: my kids can sit at a computer and discover entire movements in music with a few mouse clicks – something that once took dozens of swapped mix tapes, glimpsed moments of student radio on visits to cities with students, and months of trawling NME.

Fly My Pretties, Nato’s Theme (2005)

2005 was a pretty big year, peaking on 17 September when Helen Clark, for whom I then worked, was re-elected Prime Minister. It was a closer result than many had predicted, with a strong showing from Don Brash on the back of his polarising Orewa Speech. Two nights earlier I was sitting in Wellington’s Paramount Theatre – one of my favourite places in the world – when Fly My Pretties mastermind Barnaby Weir instructed anyone brave enough to admit they were voting for Brash to leave the premises. It was a rare moment when work and life melted together.

02 May 2013

29 April 2013

Replacement therapy.

Not in a position to buy a work by Bill Hammond, they took to growing their own.

They were happy times.