Monday, May 27, 2013

Untouched as Unknown
Jae Hoon lee
by Kathryn Tsui

Untouched as Unknown features digitally re-mastered landscapes from Nepal and Antarctica where artist Jae Hoon Lee travelled in 2012 under the Antarctica New Zealand Arts Fellowship Programme. Lee’s confronting and seamless photographic landscapes are composed from numerous individual images taken over a period of time and from varying perspectives to combine reality and the virtual.

Travelling is central to his art practice, in the last five years the artist has travelled to and captured Egypt, India, China, Mexico, Nepal and most recently Antarctica. In the vast mountain ranges of Nepal and endless ice fields of Antarctica, Lee holds in balance a visual sense of dislocation and unity in these foreign and overpowering places.

Specific to his time in Antarctica, Jae Hoon Lee produced Dry Valley, Pressure Ridge and Waiting for your call (all works 2012). In Pressure Ridge the artist flawlessly montages sections of the Scott Base exercise ground with red flags that signal the safe passageways through the potentially treacherous ice field, through his collaging he creates unknown routes that do not exist. Waiting for your call, a large hypnotic projection of the vast Pacific Ocean and solid sea ice is taken from the perspective of Robert Falcon Scott’s first hut in Antarctica.

In Annapurna and Trekking (both 2010) the artist reworks countless images taken while hiking the well-known Annapurna trek in Nepal. Lee retouches and seamlessly merges together a succession of frames taken at different times throughout the trail to construct an alternative journey or location.

Jae Hoon Lee terms his still and moving images as digitally collaged photography using Photoshop. The artist focuses on digital photography as an easy documental tool that allows him to capture source imagery from distant destinations.

This exhibition is part of the Auckland Festival of Photography 2013.

Artist biography
Jae Hoon Lee is a Korean born, Auckland based artist with an art practice centred in photography. The artist completed a Doctorate in Fine Arts in 2012 from Elam School of Fine Arts, Auckland University. Lee has exhibited extensively, nationally, in Australia and Asia. His work can be found in the art collections of Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, Chartwell Collection, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, James Wallace Arts Trust, Auckland, University of Auckland.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Life after death
A post-graffiti art exhibition
Gary Silipa & Brendan Kitto

Life After Death showcases a mixture of new visual artworks that represent ‘life’ after transitioning from painting graffiti, where the gallery was in the streets and the art was just letterforms. This dramatic change has led both artists to explore and perfect other areas of visual arts such as photography, prints, video and painting, which they have come to love and pursue with the same energy previously focused on their graffiti.

Gary Silipa was born and raised in Auckland where he lives and works as an artist. Gary’s main interest in the visual arts is painting and his art is currently defined by the use of bold colours and simple symbols used to often tell complicated stories about life. He is fascinated by the relationship between different colours and using different types of painting mediums to help him tell his stories.

Brendan Kitto grew up in Wellington, moved to Wanganui and then to Auckland at the age of 12. Moving to Auckland introduced Brendan to various sub-cultures, which he has been photographing since the mid-nineties. It wasn’t until the early 2000’s after seeing the cult graffiti documentary ‘Style Wars’ and book ‘Subway Art’ that he realized the significance of capturing the details of a movement. Participation in the graffiti/skate culture of the 90’s and 2000’s informed this developing interest in image capture and his photographic style. Brendan’s photography has allowed him to travel the world from Pakuranga to Miami and Detroit.

Opening: Wednesday 22 May, 6pm
Dates: 23 - 29 May 2013
Times: Weekdays 12pm – 8pm, Weekends 10am – 6pm
Location: Corban Estate Arts Centre. Barrel store
Address: 2 Mt Lebanon Lane, Henderson, Auckland

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Nouveau Monde

Museum of True History [MOTH]

In collaboration with Karl Chitham

Anton Kaipeita was a resident of Henderson in the late 1950’s. Unemployed with no obvious sources of income Anton spent most of his days in his small one bedroom flat, and appeared to have few friends and no family. In 1960 he left the country, leaving a letter and his house key to his neighbour.

The neighbour did not act on the note immediately. She used the key only once to ensure nothing untoward had occurred. Assuming that he would be back in due course she put the note and key away and thought nothing more of it.

After a number of months the neighbour grew concerned and filed a missing persons report. She was informed by the Police that Anton had in fact left on a ship for Europe and had filed papers with a Dunedin solicitor leaving the flat and its contents to her.   

Among the few possessions in the flat, the neighbour discovered a cupboard full of small paintings on paper that depicted fantastic buildings and interiors from a range of periods throughout history. In a leather-bound folder was also a collection of over 200 hand painted wallpaper designs that featured unusual combinations of European and Maori motifs.

The neighbour later learned from the solicitor that Anton was a descendant of the French designer Jean-Baptiste Huet, Manufacture Royale to the court of Versailles in the 1780’s. Anton’s grandparents had immigrated to New Zealand in 1892 and had been of considerable wealth.

Eventually the neighbour sold the flat and donated the entire portfolio of drawings to the Museum of True History [MOTH]. Although the collection is in a reasonable condition, MOTH has invited artist Karl Chitham to respond to the works that are now referred to as the Anton Kaipeita archive.

About Museum of True History [MOTH]
The Museum of True History (affectionately known as MOTH) is an educational institu­tion dedicated to the pursuit of truth through the study and presentation of various materials from Antipodean history. Many of MOTH’s displays are reconstructions and assumptions often based on scant evidence extracted from archival resources. Since 2010 MOTH has held solo exhibitions at St Paul Street Gallery Auckland, Masterworks Gallery Auckland, Blue Oyster Gallery Dunedin and Waikato Museum Hamilton.

Find more about this exhibition on our website: 

Friday, May 3, 2013

Boy With …..’s Beard

Gavin Hurley
by Kathryn Tsui

Boy With .....'s Beard is a new series of portraits by Auckland artist, Gavin Hurley. The central subject of this series is a boy that wears an array of distinctive facial hair styles, from famous historic figures to well-known contemporary artists. The series is an insightful and imaginative pastiche of childhood and adulthood, past and present.

The central concept of Boy with …..’s Beard is character analysis. Hurley uses the same face of a boy in multiple guises, with the facial hair shapes of twenty one personalities, based on both historical and living figures.

Portraiture and collage has consistently been the subject and mode of working for the artist. Hurley says, “Collage with paper is my main medium, cut-outs are constructed and some are then developed into paintings. This is the way I have always worked, instead of drawing with ink or pencil I cut and paste.”

Previously the artist has portrayed sea captains, explorers, political figures, classroom students, artists, these characters of history are often sourced from old photographs and printed media.

It is the material attraction to old books and photographs as much as the contents and found pictures of these books. Hurley crafts timeworn paper stocks from such publications into his collages. At times adding to them embroidered beards and moustaches which have been stitched then groomed into place personally by the artist.

The smooth and perfect complexion of Hurley’s subjects have a mask-like quality signifying identity as something that is highly visual and can be stuck or put on. These 21 portraits also represent the unknown potential for young personalities to grow up into important figures in history and society.

Artist biography

Gavin Hurley is an Auckland based artist with an art practice founded in portraiture. Since graduating from Elam School of Fine Arts, University of Auckland in 1998 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts he has exhibited both nationally and internationally. His work has featured in curated exhibitions such as: About Face: Aspects of Portraiture (Papakura Art Gallery, Papakura, 2011), Pakeha Now (The Suter, Te Aratoi o Whatu, Nelson, 2007) and Mixed-Up Childhood (Auckland Art Gallery, 2005). Recent solo exhibitions include: memexograph Melanie Roger Gallery, (2013) Whatsisface Melanie Roger Gallery, (2011) and Baad/Good Grammar, Anna Bibby Gallery

Lanu Uliuli Pa’o! Black Noise!

Lonnie Hutchinson 
by Kathryn Tsui

In Lanu Uliuli Pa'o! Black Noise! artist Lonnie Hutchinson hand cuts intricate imagery onto a large scale paper panel. The works record her time in Samoa while on a Creative New Zealand artists residency programme. Hutchinson’s lace-like cut outs of the local landscape chronicle a story of bird watching in the day and star gazing at night in a personalised panorama of her mother’s homeland.

Waiting for Le Ma’oma’o, a long panel that wraps the gallery wall, represents the artist’s daily search for the elusive and endangered native birds of Samoa, the Ma’oma’o and the Manumea. Both birds are on the brink of extinction due to introduced pests, habitat destruction caused by cyclones in the early 1990s and agricultural land conversion. Another focus during the residency was observing the sky scape above Samoa. Hutchinson could not record the Milky Way without noticing the vast amount of satellite traffic. Both subjects proved challenging to document what this highlighted for Hutchinson is the effect of contemporary life on local ecology.

Hutchinson is informed by Samoan and Ngai Tahu ancestry; her works draw visually from both Polynesian and Māori architecture and art forms such as siapo – tapa, weaving and koru motifs. In these tukutuku-like panels and works in paper, the artist explores the evocative relationships of light and shadow, space and place, the traditional and contemporary.

Artist biography
Lonnie Hutchinson is an Auckland-based artist with a multi-disciplinary art practice that includes, sculpture, installation, drawing, moving image and public artworks. Her latest public artwork, Te Waharoa ki te Ao Mārama (The Entranceway to the World of Enlightenment) has just been unveiled at Hamilton Lake. Hutchinson’s work can be found in the public collections of Auckland Art Gallery Toi O Tāmaki, Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna O Waiwhetu, Queensland Art Gallery, Australia and National Gallery of Australia.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Antarctica recreated in Auckland 
through art exhibitions at Corban Estate Art Centre

Corban Estate Arts Centre's latest exhibitions bring Antarctica to Auckland through sculptural installation, moving image and photography on display from 17 May until 16 June 2013.

Untouched as Unknown features digitally rebuilt landscapes from Antarctica, where artist Jae Hoon Lee travelled to be an ‘Arts Fellow’. Lee’s confronting and seamless photographic landscapes are composed from numerous individual images taken over a period of time, his images both document a place and create an imaginary one. This exhibition is part of the Auckland Festival of Photography 2013.

Wellington based artist Gabby O'Connor reconstructs the science and history of Antarctica in her newest installation some time, an alluring sculptural interpretation of the edge of the Antarctic Ross Ice Shelf at the point of collapse. This labor intensive installation is made from thousands of tissue paper sheets, hand dyed and cut into geometric shapes and manually assembled.

O’Connor’s Antarctic installation is the first arts project in New Zealand to be funded by Boosted, a new crowdfunding initiative for creative projects in New Zealand recently established by the Arts Foundation.

In a series of free public programmes, O’Connor will give an artist talk on Friday 17 May and a children’s workshop to make paper icebergs on Saturday 18 May, as part of the annual Corban Estate Arts Centre’s Kids Arts Festival, while Lee will give an artist talk on Saturday 8 June.

Image caption:
Gabby O’Connor, What lies beneath (detail), 2012. City Gallery Wellington.
Jae Hoon Lee, Pressure Ridge (detail), 2012. Courtesy of Starkwhite Gallery.

For more information please visit:

The Corban Estate Arts Centre (CEAC) is located at the historic Corban Winery Estate in Henderson, Auckland.  The arts centre utilizes the historic winery buildings and is home to galleries which feature a changing programme of exhibitions, as well as a café, gallery shop, and artists’ studios.  CEAC also offers a wide range of arts and cultural events and education programmes, including art classes for adults and children and a schools education programme.  The centre is open 7 days a week, 10.30am – 4pm.