Thursday, March 22, 2012

Andrew Blythe
By Sophie Keyse and Erwin van Asbeck

Andrew Blythe is a gifted self-taught artist whose arresting, rhythmic paintings possess a raw and deeply moving beauty. Over the last few years this gifted artist’s practice has been prodigious.

Andrew is not inclined to label or title his paintings, but rather for them to be seen as an ongoing dialogue of “free expression and abstract figurative composition, to be enjoyed… I am an empty vessel when I paint.”  Much like the abstract expressionists of the mid-20th century, Blythe views the paint brush as a tool to communicate his innermost thoughts and feelings, with each stroke a cathartic expression. The all-over compositions that Blythe creates also align him with painters like Jackson Pollock, with their lack of central focus and proliferation of paint over the picture plane. Using predominantly acrylic paint for its ease of application; Blythe typically paints on paper to enable constant repetition and a pushing and pulling of ideas. 

His present exhibition at Corban Estate Arts Centre focuses on his monochrome works and the use of pattern to create optically challenging artworks.  The repetition of the ‘x’ and the word ‘no’ attribute a rather nihilistic element to the works, however one should approach Blythe’s paintings with an open-mind and attempt to interpret them without the inevitable connotations of such loaded symbols/words.  Furthermore, the saturation of the picture planes with these marks almost serves to drain them of their significance and operate on a level independent from traditional interpretation.

Since 2000 his passion for painting has been supported by Toi Ora Live Art Trust, a community arts centre providing studio space and tuition for people who have experienced mental illness. Andrew has been exhibiting his works over the last ten years.

Andrew is also showing at Darren Knight Gallery in Sydney and has work in a group show at Roar Gallery in Wellington.

Andrew Blythe's artwork will be on exhibition at CEAC Gallery until 15 April.

Monday, March 19, 2012

2012 Open Studio Weekend
Arts are alive and happening at Corban Estate Arts Centre!

Open Studio weekend provides two days of free entertainment, exciting events and engaging activities. We have put together a full programme of activities around different arts expressions that visitors can enjoy over the weekend in one place.

The programme features on-going performance presentations that include both established artists and young performers groups. Some of the performance companies that will share the stage are Atamira, a professional contemporary dance company; Phoenix, a company that uses the performing arts to teach young people through their shared stories; Mixit, a youth arts project that brings refugees together with local and migrant youth; Interacting, a disability arts theatre company that helps to develop the potential and capabilities of disabled people and Kelston Kweens, a sisterhood of like-minded Fa'afafine/Transgender and Gay performers. There will also be Flamenco music and dance. MC for the day is the vibrant and entertaining, Mema Maeli.

On-site ceramic, painting, sculpture, and printmaking artists will showcase their skills and invite people to visit their studios and see their works. There will also be free drop-in workshops where people can create their own printmaking, graffiti on vinyl and junk and pre-loved books sculptures while learning different media and techniques.

Arts exhibitions will be held in multiple locations including Neighbourhood group exhibition, artists’ exhibitions in the CEAC gallery, the Waitakere Central Community Arts Council members’ exhibition at Old St. Michael’s Church, and a collection of art from senior Waitakere College students. There will also be exhibitions from renowned artists such as Bro’town illustrator Maka Makatoa, award winner weaver artist Matafetu Smith, painting and dry media artist Valerie White and glass artist Susan Brogan.

This weekend will also include live demonstrations from TMD (The Most Dedicated) renowned graffiti art crew and Pacific crafting the Pacifica Arts Centre. People can purchase art and craft pieces from our gallery shop or artists’ studios and enjoy organic cafĂ© at Coffee Studio.

Date: 24 & 25 March, 2012
Time: 10 am – 4 pm
Venue: Corban Estate Arts Centre. 426 Great North Rd., Henderson. Waitakere City. Intersection of Great North Rd., Lincoln and Swanson Rd. (Free entry and parking)

We have prepared a full programme of events and activities over the weekend available on our website: We would love to see you there!