GOW LANGSFORD GALLERY
GOW LANGSFORD GALLERY artist catalogue
Gow Langsford Gallery was established by John Gow and Gary Langsford in 1987 and is now widely recognized as one of Australasia’s most influential dealer galleries. Alongside a regular and varied exhibition schedule at our two inner-city Auckland locations, the Gallery has exhibited at numerous international art fairs since 1992. Gow Langsford Gallery is committed to the development of the visual arts in New Zealand and to fostering the careers of the artists represented. The Gallery has an increasing focus on showing high-quality international art and exhibition highlights include one-man shows by Pablo Picasso (1998), Damien Hirst (2010), Bernar Venet (2006 and 2012), Donald Judd (2002), Tony Cragg (2005 and 2011), Tim Hawkinson (2008) and Andy Warhol (2013).
GALLERY LOCATIONS LORNE STREET 26 Lorne Street, Auckland, 1010, New Zealand KITCHENER STREET Corner Kitchener and Wellesley Streets, Auckland, 1010, New Zealand CONTACT Phone: +64 9 303 9395 Email: email@example.com Hours: Monday — Friday 10am - 6pm / Saturday: 10am - 4pm Sunday: Closed / Public Holidays: Closed
The annual Spring Catalogue began in 1995 and has concentrated on presenting high-value secondary market artworks by both New Zealand and international artists. This year’s publication is a break from this tradition and focusses on the artists represented by the gallery.
Simon Ingram, Paintings of the Sun, 2015. Gow Langsford Gallery Lorne Street
GARY LANGSFORD As I sit in Venice writing this, having just visited the Biennale and looking forward to Art Basel in Switzerland, I am reminded of how important it is for a commercial gallery to select exciting and interesting artists to present to the viewing public. It is gratifying to be in Venice and see works from a number of artists represented by Gow Langsford Gallery. This year there are glass pieces by Tony Cragg at Glasstress, a large sculpture by Bernar Venet in the grounds of Palazzo Franchetti on the Grand Canal and Katharina Grosse has a large installation work in the Arsenale. All three artists are represented in New Zealand by Gow Langsford Gallery. Although there are no New Zealand gallery artists at Venice this year, our artists have appeared in exhibitions in previous years. Judy Millar was the NZ commissioned artist in 2009, and Darryn George and Dale Frank have both featured at the Palazzo Bembo. It feels entirely appropriate to celebrate our represented artists in this publication which replaces the annual Spring Catalogue. Having two Directors in the gallery has made for interesting discussions over the years as to which artists we wish to represent. This gives us an eclectic range of artists as John and I have different preferences and areas of expertise. My degree in Fine Arts (sculpture) has given the gallery a strong focus on artists who work in three dimensions, while
John’s interest in Maori and Pacific art has provided the gallery with some extraordinary contemporary works in this area. We both share an interest in contemporary painting, and this is not confined to one aesthetic. Abstract painters such as Judy Millar, Sara Hughes, Max Gimblett and Simon Ingram exhibit alongside representational painters Dick Frizzell, Karl Maughan, Graham Fletcher and John Walsh. Some artists have been with the gallery since its inception in 1987 (Dick Frizzell, Karl Maughan, Michael Hight and Judy Millar) while others have joined the gallery recently (Graham Fletcher and André Hemer). Gow Langsford Gallery has launched the careers of many of New Zealand’s top artists, although not all have remained with the gallery. The same can be said for the staff. The people who own and run many of New Zealand’s dealer galleries got their start being employed at Gow Langsford Gallery. It is often disappointing to see an artist or staff member leave the gallery to continue their career somewhere else but it is also satisfying to see them succeed and realise that we have played a significant role in that success. I feel the gallery has never been stronger, both in its stable of artists, and its staff, each playing an extremely important role in the ongoing success of Gow Langsford Gallery. I wish to convey my gratitude to all the ‘team’ and trust we will all participate and enjoy our future successes.
Staff left to right: Kirsten Fitzsimons, Gail Hofmann, Shona Irwin, Gary Langsford, John Gow, Anna Jackson, Hannah Valentine, Priya Patel
Note from the directors
JOHN GOW This catalogue backgrounds our practising artists who make up the very core of our gallery. Our relationship with our stable of artists has developed and grown over years of involvement, and forms the very essence of our business. These relationships go beyond that of a professional nature and become something in the realm of a large extended family. You live the ups and downs of your artists’ lives, provide advice on all manner of things and help support the fiscal requirements of everyday living. One of the great benefits of working with such talented people is to share the act of discovery around their practice, help steer their careers towards success and enjoy the triumph of a museum exhibition or a sell-out show. For every new month of the year, there are new exhibitions. With each exhibition comes the expectation of critical acclaim, financial rewards and a furthering of the artist’s career. This is quite a responsibility and I am not sure that even our artists realise that we suffer pre-show nerves and feel a sense of very real responsibility to make sure that each exhibition goes as well as it possibly can. That little knot, below the shoulder in my back quite often tweaks up around opening time. Along with our artists, I am very proud of the team we have at Gow Langsford Gallery. They are professionals in the gallery business and combine to keep our galleries moving
forward in a smooth and positive manner. It is not easy when one is managing so many personalities - two demanding directors, a large stable of artists and a multitude of clients and gallery visitors all wanting a small (or not so small) part of you. I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of our staff for their efforts and patience in keeping Gow Langsford Gallery on a steady course for so many years. Gary and I have combined to make a unique team in the history of New Zealand art dealers. Between us we have a broad knowledge of the arts from nineteenth century New Zealand, through to what is happening today in the contemporary art field. Gary’s extensive overseas travel has given us a diverse international programme from Pablo Picasso to Donald Judd to Andy Warhol, to name but three. This has enabled our artists to sit beside great international names. Interesting and important exhibitions have been curated bringing art to the eyes of the New Zealand public that they would otherwise have had to travel abroad to see. If you had asked me thirty three years ago when I first became involved in the New Zealand art world (through my parents) if what we have achieved to date was ever possible I would have said “absolutely not”. The power of two driven people with a vision is a very powerful thing indeed. I look forward to celebrating our thirtieth year in business together and what the future has in stall.
Dale Frank, Chinese Landscape 5 - bereft talent (detail), 2015
Jan De Vliegher
Hye Rim Lee
John Walsh Dale Frank, He felt such a failure at handÂ gestures (detail), 2015
B. 1949, NZ
Laurence Aberhart is increasingly recognised as New Zealand’s most eminent photographer. His images of landscapes, facades, monuments and interiors are entrenched in this country’s art history. Not only are his images steeped in the history of the subjects he portrays, his chosen medium is too – a vintage View camera. He chooses to follow entirely analogue processes, printing each photograph by hand to the same scale as the camera’s negatives. As a result, Aberhart’s work has an intensity of detail and atmosphere that digital technology struggles to capture. The history of photography lies behind Aberhart’s quiet, yet powerfully engaging images. Aberhart has received a number of Creative New Zealand awards, a Fulbright Travel Grant (USA, 1988), a Fulbright Research Fellowship (USA, 2010) and a Moet et Chandon Fellowship in France (1994). He was the recipient of an Arts Foundation Award in 2013. His first solo exhibition with Gow Langsford Gallery was in 2014.
A great photo is like an underground tunnel, linking histories that seemed to be separate. Aberhart’s extraordinary achievement has been to create photographs that carry the intimacy and urgency we associate with certain scenes from our own family albums. In the last two decades, he has widened the focus of his art without diminishing its intensity, moving from the rites and intimacies of his immediate family into those of the wider culture - an album encompassing, as he [Aberhart] put it in an eight-word manifesto from 1985, ‘My family, my country, my head, my heart’.
Justin Paton, Living Proof, Aberhart, Victoria University Press (2007) p. 284
Taranaki (afterglow into night), 19 November 2002 (detail), 2002
Last light, Otaru, Hokkaido, Japan, 26 May 2001, 2001
The [Aberhart] photographs offer no firm answer, only endless restatements of the questions. What they leave us in no doubt about is the absolute necessity of the asking. The special power of Aberhartâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s images is to get us thinking with this kind of urgency about what we value, and what we value in images.
Justin Paton, Living Proof, Aberhart, Victoria University Press (2007) p. 294
Church, Maraeroa, Hokianga Harbour, 2 May 1982, 1982
Cardiff, Taranaki, 12 July 1991, 1991-2008 silver gelatin gold and selenium toned 195 x 24+5mm
War memorial, Wyndham, Southland, 11 December 2010, 2010 silver gelatin print, selenium toned 195 x 245mm
Although his subject matter has ranged from the intensely detailed to the minimal, painter Martin Ball has consistently worked in the style of realism. With a career spanning more than thirty years Ball is renowned for his hyper-realist works, in particular his large-scale portraits. His incredible technical skill - evident in his use of pencil, graphite and oil is a testament to his disciplined approach to art-making. The resulting works can perhaps best be described as hauntingly real. Ball was a finalist in the distinguished Australian portraiture awards The Archibald Prize, held at the Art Gallery of New South Wales in 2005, 2007 and 2010, and in 2008 won the Packing Room Prize. He was also awarded the People’s Choice Award at the 2006 Wallace Art Awards and was the subject of a mini-retrospective exhibition DRAWN, 1975 – 2015 at the Pah Homestead, Auckland (2015). Ball has produced several successful commissions and his works are held in numerous private collections and public institutions including the Auckland Art Gallery, Christchurch Art Gallery, Waikato Museum and Sarjeant Gallery. Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Martin Ball since 2000.
His detailed recording of [her] features gives a deceptively realistic look to an image that transforms reality by its colossal size and the gravitas it confers on its sitter. Ball’s vision is highly selective and his intention is to give more than a simple recording of everyday reality. He emerges as one of the few New Zealand painters to produce portraits that have an audible voice in a contemporary world saturated with photographic imagery. Michael Dunn, New Zealand Painting a Concise History, University of Auckland (2003)
Martin Ballâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s studio, 2015. Photography: Tobias Kraus
John Lennon 1967, 2015 oil on canvas 1840 x 1220mm
James Cousinsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; paintings resist definition as abstract or figurative. Abstraction and figuration are intertwined and enmeshed, and irresolvable tensions arise between the original form and the surface.Â Beyond the notion of an essentially external form of figuration, no clear reason is offered for the use of found imagery. The use of flower-based imagery, for example, anchors a playing out of processes of accumulation and removal. A simple translation of the making of a work could read as a list of layered acts - squeegeeing, stencilling, brushing, spinning, spraying, pouring, painting and scraping. The result is a stuttering of representation, the process of looking is stalled and queried. Cousins has exhibited extensively since the late 1990s. Exhibition highlights include Code NZ at Canvas International in the Netherlands (2004), which resulted in participation in the 2005 Rotterdam Art Fair; PX: A Purposeless Production/A Necessary Praxis curated by Leonhard Emmerling at St Paul Street Gallery, Auckland (2007) and inclusion in an exhibition at 21st Street Projects, New York City, curated by Saul Ostrow (2012). Gow Langsford Gallery has represented James Cousins since 2008
Many of the recent works begin with a figurative image, taken from a photograph, from which Cousins paints a flower or organic form. These images are often drawn from pictorial reference books, themselves second hand and outdated. Cousins is interested in pursuing the notion of veracity and truth in historical references from the relatively recent past that have been superseded by new truths, currently seen as just as immutable.
Louise Martin-Chew, James Cousins: The structure of existence, Art Collector, Issue 69 (2014)
James Cousinsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; studio, 2015. Photography: Tobias Kraus
Untitled (pl 552), 2015 oil and acrylic on canvas 1050 x 950mm
I am interested in making work that is difficult to pin down visually. I like to extend the idea of work that is constantly changing. It is my ambition that every time you see the painting, you see something you havenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t before.
James Cousins quoted by Louise Martin-Chew, James Cousins: The structure of existence, Art Collector, Issue 69 (2014)
B. 1949, UK
Having maintained a consistently high international profile since the 1980s Tony Cragg’s work has contributed significantly to the discourse around contemporary sculpture. He is one of the most highly acclaimed and influential sculptors of his generation. At the centre of his sculptural practice is an interest in the relationship between materials, science and the body. Tony Cragg’s international accolades include Winner of the Turner Prize (1988), CBE for services to art, the prestigious Piepenbrock Award for sculpture (2002) and the Praemium Imperial (2007). Internationally, he has exhibited independently at innumerable public galleries, including the Scottish National Gallery (2011); Museum of Modern Art, Malaga (2007); the Museum of Contemporary Art of Rome (2003); Neue National Gallerie, Berlin (2001); National Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul (1997) and Whitechapel Art Gallery, London (1997). In addition, his works have appeared in group shows at the Louvre (2001); the Royal Academy of Arts, London (2011); MoMA (2005); Tate Liverpool (2005); National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo (2002); and the Peggy Guggenheim Museum, Venice (2002). Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Tony Cragg since 2004.
There is this idea that sculpture is static, maybe even dead, but I feel absolutely contrary to that. I’m not a religious person – I’m an absolute materialist – and for me material is exciting and ultimately sublime. When I’m involved in making sculpture, I’m looking for a system of belief or ethics in the material. I want the material to have a dynamic, to push and move and grow. I also want that to happen over the course of making things, so that as soon as one generation of sculptures has gone up, and another generation is coming on and things are growing up around me. That’s how it seems to work for me.
Robert Ayers, THE AI INTERVIEW Tony Cragg, ARTINFO online (2007)
Paradosso, 2010. Overleaf: Split Figure, Luke, Ever After, Duomo of Milan Terraces, 2015. Photography: Michael Richter
When people look at sculpture, they tend to think, “Oh, it’s formal, where’s the content? Does it have a political or social meaning?” But for me, to make a sculpture or make a painting is a radical political statement already. To work outside of the utilitarian system, to make material and transfer in a very special way some meaning and some life, some human significance onto the material is quite a rare, very special and, in some ways also, very mysterious process.
Tony Cragg quoted by J.Wood in Terms and Conditions: Interview with Tony Cragg, Tony Cragg: In and Out of Material, Verlag der Buchhandlung Walter König (2007) p.23
Belgian painter Jan De Vliegher is known for his paintings that have a sense of vitalized reality. Painting alla prima (wet on wet), his vigorous brushwork appears to record a moment in transition, a brief and fleeting moment in time. ‘Collections’ are an underlying concept in his work and subjects are frequently centered on the traditions and philosophy of collecting and display. Jan De Vliegher lives and works in Bruges, Belgium. He has exhibited extensively in New York and Europe including Knokke, Belgium; Venice, Italy; Stockholm, Sweden and Berlin, Germany and more recently in New Zealand. Gow Langsford Gallery first showed De Vliegher’s work in a solo exhibition in 2014
Jan De Vliegher’s paintings are reminiscent of an Impressionism that uses the object as an alibi for the eruption of highly expressive light studies on the canvas. De Vliegher paints ‘familiar objects’… but he deconstructs traditional pictorial illusionism which leads to an increasingly higher level of abstraction. As a painter he seems infatuated with his subjects, which he manages to ‘capture’ in a highly sensual and evocative way. There’s something Baroque about his work, which could also be considered as memories of a romantic world view, in which subjective perceptions are raised to a universal level. His work is hardly a case of ‘superficial’ decorative painting, nor does it aspire to be profound or visionary. The relationship with a ‘real’ reality is maintained, but he chooses to add elements to it or omit them.
Kasteel van Gaasbeek, Belgium. Art Odyssey blog (2013)
Jan De Vliegher’s Studio, 2015. Photography: Dominique Provost
JAN DE VLIEGHEr
Jan De Vliegherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Studio, 2012. Photography: Dominique Provost
Air NZ dish, 2015 oil on canvas 1000 x 1000mm 35
Photography: Dominique Provost. Left: Jan De Vliegher’s studio, 2015. Photography: Jan De Vliegher
While working consistently with the media of bronze, Paul Dibble’s approach is diverse. New Zealand and Pacific narratives, and objects from contemporary life form the subjects of his works which vary in size from small marquettes to works that tower at five meters tall. Different series reflect an engagement with a range of styles from quirky surrealism, merry folk art, to a cool elegant modernism. He is an accomplished sculptor and leading artist of his generation. In recent years Dibble has incorporated Corten steel into his large-scale works. In a juxtaposition of function and aesthetic play, the two materials demonstrate a fascinating contrast. The comparison of material surfaces add further emphasis to variances in colour and finish – the lush matt orange hues of the oxidised Corten surfaces contrasted against the dark brown and golden hues of the bronze patina. This use of contrasting surfaces and colour is taken further with the recent introduction of gold leaf. Dibble’s work is represented in public collections across the country including Te Papa Museum of New Zealand. His work is the subject of two monographs: The Large Works (Bateman, 2012) and Paul Dibble (Bateman, 2002). In 2006 he was awarded the commission for the New Zealand Hyde Park Corner Memorial in London. His resulting work, The Southern Stand, is permanently installed in Hyde Park, London in 2006. Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Paul Dibble since 1990.
Like some Peter Pan of the foundry, he has a lightness of imagination through which he overcomes the heaviness of his chosen material (many artists would conduct their experiments on the page before entering the foundry, such is the difficulty in working in bronze). Defying categorization, Dibble dreams out loud, his physical practice merging with his thought process. As a result, our city and landscapes increasingly resemble what could be Dibble’s dream diary, a place peppered with familiar, half remembered objects both large and small, at times goofily literal and others sublime.
Malcolm Burgess, Paul Dibble, Art New Zealand #154, (2015) p. 57
Paul Dibbleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Foundry, 2015. Photography: Graeme Brown, Vision Media Manawatu, courtesy of Dibble studio
Above and left: Paul Dibbleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s foundry, 2015. Photography: Graeme Brown, Vision Media Manawatu, courtesy of Dibble studio. Below: The Gold of the Kowhai, 2014, Gow Langsford Gallery Lorne Street. Photography: Tobias Kraus
The Gold of the Kowhai, largest model, 2015 edition 1 of 2 cast bronze and 24 carat gold 810 x 400 x 180mm
Photography: Graeme Brown, Vision Media Manawatu, courtesy of Dibble studio
Central to Graham Fletcher’s painting is the concept of collecting. In particular, he is interested in the critical legacy of the European tradition of displaying Oceanic and African Tribal art in domestic settings. The question of how this legacy might be appropriated and subverted within a contemporary Pacific and New Zealand context is of particular relevance to Fletcher as an artist of mixed Samoan and European heritage. Fletcher has exhibited extensively in New Zealand and abroad since the late 1990s. His works are held in collections around the country, including Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand, the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki and the Wallace Arts Trust. Further abroad, collections include the National Gallery of Victoria, Australia and Queensland Art Gallery, Gallery of Modern Art, Australia. His exhibition history includes Time of others at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo (2015), travelling to The National Museum of Art, Osaka (2015), Singapore Art Museum (2015 - 2016) and the Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane (2016). Further exhibitions include Home AKL at Auckland Art Gallery (2012), the 7th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art at Queensland Art Gallery and the Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane (2012), and Future Primitive at Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne (2013). Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Graham Fletcher since 2014.
Through his taut paintings and disarmingly organic sculptures, Fletcher re-posits the presentation of ‘tribal’ artifacts within midtwentieth century domestic environments. His practice continues to mine ideas about value, possession, interculturalism and collecting, and, with their presentation in museum contexts, these works confront and re-frame the question of public and private ownership of ‘authentic’ nonWestern objects.
Rhana Devenport, Mid-century Modernism: Pasifika Style, Lounge Room Tribalism, Mangere Arts Centre (2012) p.41
All images: Graham Fletcherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s studio, 2015. Photography: Holly MacKinven
Untitled (Yellow Arc), 2015 oil on canvas 1620 x 1300mm
The â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;conceptâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; spaces that I create are idealized fictions made in the hope that they trigger for the viewer a period in time where it was perceived that people led a better life, a kind of utopia, where the troubles of the world could be left at the front door. However, this world has now opened up to new possibilities of interculturalism, and the alienating and familiar qualities you refer to in the work is exactly what I wish to communicate in juxtaposing tribal forms and modernist references. I guess it brings into light the bigger picture, both locally and globally, the continual ebb and flow of intercultural tensions and the various forces that shape our society.
Graham Fletcher, Questions for Graham Fletcher: a conversation with Caroline Vercoe, Lounge Room Tribalism, Mangere Arts Centre (2012) p.51
Australian artist Dale Frank is a painter known for his evocative abstract works that challenge the concept of painting. He is one of Australia’s most successful abstract painters. Frank’s exhibition history is vast and international. It includes the Venice Biennale, in the Aperto section in 1984 and in the collateral exhibition Personal Structures in 2013. In 2010 his work was included in the 17thBiennale of Sydney: The Beauty of Distance, Songs of Survival in a Precarious Age. He was recognized with a major solo retrospective at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney in 2000 and in 2005 won the Arthur Guy Memorial Painting Prize from the Bendigo Art Gallery. The monograph So Far: the Art of Dale Frank 2005-1980 (Schwatz Publishing) was published in 2007 and follows the publication of his earlier monograph Dale Frank (Craftsman House, 1992). His paintings are held in every major public collection in Australia and in numerous museum, private and corporate collections throughout the world. Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Dale Frank since 1997.
The genius of Frank’s practice lies in his ability to subvert the traditions of painting while also exposing and isolating the medium’s underlying conceptuality. He uses the universal languages of color, tone, and rhythm to engage with the viewer on a purely instinctual level, subconsciously enlisting his viewers as participants in his ongoing experiment with the potentiality of paint and surface. Frank’s singular vision combined with his masterly manipulation of the painted surface make his stunningly evocative compositions hypnotically beautiful, but also cerebrally engaging. Nicholas Forrest, The Fluid Dynamic of Conceptual Painter, Blouin Art Info online (2014) 48
He got by on a constant diet of Voltaren Pepsi Max and Dunhill, 2015. Photography: Peter Stoop
58 minus 5 (detail), 2015. Photography: Peter Stoop. Left: Chinese Landscape 6 - Citibank (detail), 2015. Photography: Tobias Kraus
How he got to look so beautiful, 2015 varnish on anodised Euromir Perspex 1800 x 1400mm framed
Dick Frizzell is a man of many hats. His work has often been defined by its dramatic diversions in subject matter and styles. His taste is conveniently broad and nothing is off limits for Frizzell. As an anti-traditionalist, Frizzell often makes a deliberate effort to mix up the categories of high and low art – in 2015 his artwork appeared on the packaging of New Zealand’s iconic ‘Vogels’ bread. He is arguably this country’s most popular painter. Frizzell has exhibited extensively since the early 1990s with career highlights that include the show When Tom and Elizabeth Took the Farm at the Waikato Art Museum (2015); the travelling retrospective Dick Frizzell: Portrait of a Serious Artiste (City Gallery, Wellington, 1997); his residency in Antarctica as part of the Invitational Artist Programme (2005) and the publication of the monograph Dick Frizzell: The Painter (Random House NZ, 2009). In 2011 Frizzell penned It’s All About the Image (Random House, 2011), a rough guide to New Zealand art history commissioned by the publisher. His work is held in the collections of Auckland Art Gallery, Christchurch Art Gallery, The Chartwell Collection and Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand. Dick Frizzell was included in Gow Langsford Gallery’s inaugural exhibition in 1987 and has been represented by the Gallery since.
Above and left: Dick Frizzellâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Studio, 2015. Photography: Tobias Kraus. Below: Leafy Track, 2014
Wonderful, 2014 oil and enamel on canvas 750 x 750mm
I found that tin of ‘Wonderful’ mackerel in a store in Rarotonga… and simply couldn’t resist it. Bought the tin…cut off the label and brought it home! Painting it felt a little weird because I never thought I’d go back to ‘the source of the Nile’ like that. I even used enamel paint mixed in with the oils…and I won’t be doing many of them…those enamels nearly killed me! I don’t want to have myself starting …and ending…my career with a fish-tin label painting. Despite the poetic symmetry!
Dick Frizzell, in conversation May 2015
In Dick Frizzell’s first solo exhibition, the A-Fishial Show of 1978, his paintings’ deadpan humour was fringed with a barely suppressed exuberance and delight. The paintings collided the pragmatics of an adman’s need for a compelling motif with the visceral pleasures of expressive modernist painting. Like the best of his work between then and now, these images of gaudy fish tin labels and comic strip characters painted in bright and viscous enamel conveyed the freshness and magic of a first encounter.
Allan Smith, Arts Last Action Hero, Dick Frizzell Portrait of a Serious Artiste, City Gallery Wellington (1997) p.6
B.1970, NZ (Nga Puhi)
Darryn George’s paintings are a fusion of Western abstraction and Maori imagery. He often incorporates Maori patterning and text in his otherwise minimal works. His practice is underpinned by an interest in modes of preserving historical information and by the representation of the spiritual through abstraction. Alongside exhibitions at public galleries around New Zealand, Darryn George’s most notable achievement to date is inclusion in Personal Structures a collateral exhibition of the 55th Venice Biennale, 2013. George’s works are held in public collections in New Zealand, including Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand, Christchurch Art Gallery and the Chartwell Collection. His work is the subject of the artist’s monograph Darryn George (Mihi Publishers, Christchurch, 2010). Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Darryn George since 2008.
This sense of history as taonga or treasure to be handed on from person to person has been present in George’s practice of the past seven or eight years. Many of the visual associations of his works are concerned with the storage and transmission of historical information. The carvings and paintings of traditional Maori meeting houses, for example, recount the history of the place and its people. Like the books, bookcases, laptops and files recalled by George’s abstracted forms, wharenui are storehouses of information, databases of whakapapa or genealogy and the lessons of history.
Lara Strongman, Conversations with the World, Darryn George, Mihi Publishing (2010) p. 103
The Folder Room, 2013, Palazzo Bembo, 55th Venice Biennale. Photography: Samuel George
Atua (Magnet), 2012. Left: Darryn Georgeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s studio, 2015. Photography: Darryn George
Register (Onement 2), 2014 automotive paint on melamine 1000 x 500mm 64
Register #16, 2015 automotive paint on melamine 1000 x 500mm 65
One of New Zealand’s most acclaimed painters, Max Gimblett is well known for his enduring use of the quatrefoil shape. He was appointed an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for his services to art in 2015. He has based himself in New York since the early 1970s and continues to exhibit regularly in the US and throughout New Zealand. His philosophies and practices are varied and encompass influences as divergent as Abstract Expressionism, Modernism, Eastern and Western spiritual beliefs, Jungian psychology and ancient cultures. Gimblett is well represented in major collections around the world, most significantly in the permanent collection of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, the MoMA, New York, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, the Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane, and the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney. Along with his inclusion in the exhibition The Third Mind: American Artists Contemplate Asia, 1860-1989 at the Solomon R. Guggenheim, New York (2009), his solo exhibition in the series The Word of God at the Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (2011) illustrates his increasing international profile. The Auckland Art Gallery hosted a survey exhibition of his work in 2002, and his works are held in the collections of all of the major public institutions in New Zealand.
The bravery of facing up to a blank canvas and transforming it is no small thing, It’s one thing to read about this kind of aesthetic impulse, but quite another to try it out for oneself. To paint in this fashion requires absolute conviction – at least, if the brushstroke is to convey a sense of clarity that will translate to real emotion on the canvas. It requires a lack of fear.
Jenni Quilter, Workspace, Charta (2010) p.119
Gimblett is the subject of several publications including the monograph Max Gimblett (Craig Potton and Gow Langsford Gallery, 2002), Max Gimblett: The Brush of All Things (Auckland Art Gallery, 2004) Workspace (Charta, 2010) and Max Gimblett (Charta, 2013) and The Sound of One Hand (Charta, 2014). Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Max Gimblett since 1988. 66
Max Gimblett’s studio, 2015. Photography: Paul Barbera/Where They Create
Max Gimblettâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s studio, 2015. Photography above, right, following spread: Paul Barbera/Where They Create
Drenched in Moonlight, 2015 gesso, acrylic and vinyl polymers EX-74 resin, water based size, 23.74kt rosanoble gold leaf on canvas 25 inch/635mm diameter quatrefoil 72
The Lady of the Thrones, 2015 gesso, acrylic and vinyl polymers EX-74 resin, Japanese Crimson and moonbeam coloured silver leaf, celestial daybreak leaf, shellac based primer, 23.75kt rosanoble gold leaf on wood panel 25 inch/635mm diameter quatrefoil 73
Katharina Grosse is one of the most inventive and intriguing painters working today. Through a fusion of painting with architecture and sculpture, she produces a physically immersive experience for the viewer, choosing to work directly onto walls and objects. She enlivens surfaces with intense, visceral arrangements of colour, achieved through the careful blending and application of primary and secondary colours. Each hue has the function of distinguishing between different movements and her extremely physical process of application is reflected within the pictorial space. Born and based in Germany, Grosse has had work commissioned by institutions around the world, including Amsterdam’s De Appel; Paris’ Palais de Tokyo; The Chinati Foundation in Marfa, Texas; UCLA Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, and the Queensland Art Gallery of Modern Art (GoMA), Brisbane. Her work Untitled Trumpet featured in All The World’s Futures, the curated Arsenale section of 56th Venice Biennale (2015).
Back indoors, German Katharina Grosse's painting installation Untitled Trumpet (2015) is a marvel of sweeping, bright, spray-painted colors mixing with objects and materials, including draped fabric, mounds of soil and aluminium parts. It's an enveloping, transformative, even ecstatic work but with a rough streak, hinting at landslides, entropy, and environmental disaster.
Gregory Volk, All the World’s Futures, Trials and Tribulations at the Venice Biennale, Art In America, (May 2015)
Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Katharina Grosse since 2004.
Overleaf: Untitled Trumpet, 2015, 56th Venice Biennale, All the World’s Futures. Photography: Nic Tenwiggenhorn
o.T., 2015 acrylic on canvas 1450 x 940mm
B. 1965, NZ (Ngai Tahu)
In Chris Heaphy’s engaging painterly practice, he has actively sought a powerful hybrid subjectively assembled from diverse aesthetic and thematic concerns; amidst his keen awareness of the dense thicket of symbols that surrounds us, he has located his own distinctive language, a generous re-mix of lavish and busy signs conveyed in a clean and crisp graphic style.
Martin Patrick, Chris Heaphy’s Kaleidoscopic Eye, Art New Zealand, Issue 144, (2012-13)
Chris Heaphy’s paintings reflect an interest in the language of signs and symbols and particularly both the adaptation and adoption of signs between cultures. His works are typically colonized by hundreds of intricate silhouetted images that collect, organise and arrange themselves to fit together, spreading across the canvas to be a part of a localised group and together be part of the whole composition. Although each symbol could be interpreted in multifarious ways, the viewer is stimulated to consider their importance as a whole. The eye oscillates between the elaborate imagery and the greater composition, and both in the act honing in and panning out, ever increasing imageswithin-images are revealed. In more recent works, while still employing the use of the silhouette, he explores the way we experience the complexity of meaning through colour and the painting processes used to create them. Chris Heaphy has been a practicing artist since the early 1990s and is the recipient of several grants and awards including the Olivia Spencer Bower Fellowship (1995), a residency at the Cite Internationale des Arts, Paris (2001) and the Veuve Cliquot Ponsardin Residency in Champagne (2001). He has exhibited extensively throughout Australasia and Europe and his work is included in numerous major public and private collections in New Zealand, Asia, Europe and North America. The Christchurch Art Gallery and Auckland Art Gallery both hold works in their collections. A publication on his works Chris Heaphy: Daisy in My Lazy Eye was published in 2008 (Plum Blossom, Hong Kong). Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Chris Heaphy since 2008.
Above: Chris Heaphyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s studio, 2015. Below: Natural Selection, 2014, Gow Langsford Gallery Kitchener Street. Left: Kotiri (detail), 2012
15Ëł Left to right: The Arrival of the Small Birds, Piwauwau, 2015Â The Arrival of the Small Birds, Tauhou, 2015 The Arrival of the Small Birds, Korimako, 2015 The Arrival of the Small Birds, Titi Pounamu, 2015 The Arrival of the Small Birds, Toutouwai, 2015 The Arrival of the Small Birds, Komiromiro, 2015 acrylic on Belgian linen each 800 x 800mm 85
André Hemer‘s works are like painted artefacts of the digital world. His typically bright abstract works combine elements of digital experience with traditional painting. His work is on the cover of Thames and Hudson’s publication 100 Painters of Tomorrow (2014). The book foregrounded some of the world’s most promising painters from more than 30 countries. He was also named by The Guardian as one of their top ten favourites to watch. Hemer has been exhibiting since the mid-2000s is the recipient of several awards including The National Contemporary Art Award, Waikato Musuem (2011). He has secured numerous international residencies and exhibited extensively in New Zealand, Australia, Korea, Taiwan, Germany and the United Kingdom. His work continues to attract global attention, affirming him as an international painter to watch. André Hemer joined Gow Langsford Gallery’s stable of artists in 2015.
The potency of painting is its potential to establish and record new ways of seeing. Thus the paintings in [Hemer’s] New Smart 0bjects offer a new kind of representation - one that explores painting moving freely between states of digital representation and painted object. 0ne that nakedly exhibits a set of layers, images, and objects and the transactions between them. [Hemer’s work]...cryptically weaves different approaches to painting into a seamless unity: digital printing and analogue painting; real airbrush with Photoshop tools; digital masking and real masking; printed canvas with real canvas. The slipping between registers is so subtle and well integrated that it is hard to tell where one begins and the other starts.
Oliver Watts, Andre Hemer: New Smart Objects, exhibition catalogue, Chalk Horse (2013) Big Node #8 (detail), 2015
New Smart Object #61, 2013. Left: New Smart Object Plus 4, 2015
16Ëł New Smart Object Plus #15, 2015 acrylic, oil and pigment on canvas 911 x 714mm
Michael Hight is a realist painter best known for his beehiveinhabited landscapes. His more recent works depict surreal dreamscapes imbued with a sense of childhood innocence. In these overwhelmingly dark and mysterious environments, he presents and juxtaposes ambiguous symbols, creating an uncertainty that is as curiously haunting as it is beautiful. Hight has an established exhibition history that spans more than 25 years. He continues to exhibit regularly in New Zealand and Australia. His work is held in collections in New Zealand, UK, Germany, Italy, USA, Hong Kong and Australia. Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Michael Hight since the gallery opened in 1987.
For several decades, Michael Hight has been a phantom beekeeper scouring the New Zealand landscape for hives. The beehive as a found object promotes fertile associations for both artist and spectatorâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;from the abstract form to the transformative activity to the oppositional relations (light and dark, silence and cacophony, stillness and labour). The hunting trips are fleeting, but each beehive painting takes a long time to complete. With his black paintings, Hight is also hunting for images, but now the search is prolonged as he contemplates and simmers version upon version, delving into memory and tangible archives. Hight becomes archaeologist, theatre master, storyteller, bricoleur, memoirist. Again, the effect for both artist and spectator is multipleâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;the psychological and cerebral connections can be startling, nostalgic, unsettling, macabre, theatrical. Paula Green, Nights at the Theatre: Michael Hightâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Black Paintings, Michael Hight: Crossing the Line, Gow Langsford Gallery (2014) p.21
Michael Hightâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s studio, 2014. Photography: Tobias Kraus
There is one last and lingering question elicited by these nocturnal works: What squalls of human psychology have blasted these miniature scenarios? What weather have they endured to end here, on the cleared and dust-free ledge—this platform or stage which is both cliff-top and dancefloor? Or might it be the flat-roof of one of Hight’s beehives upon which some kind of arcane theatrical production is playing out?
Gregory O’Brien, Two Fields and a Shelf, Michael Hight: Crossing the Line, Gow Langsford Gallery (2014) p.21
Crossing the Line, 2014. Gow Langsford Gallery Lorne Street
Cape Farewell, 2015 oil on linen 910 x 1830mm 96
B. 1971, CA/NZ
Sara Hughes’ work examines the communicative power of colour and pattern as transformative visual modes. Hughes has exhibited in public galleries in New Zealand and her paintings and installations are held in many important Australasian public and private collections including the Chartwell Collection; Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand, Wellington and the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra. Her work has attracted significant attention winning both the Wallace Art Award and the Norsewear Art Award in 2005. In 2008 she was the first New Zealand recipient of The RIPE: Art and Australia magazine Art Award and she has been selected to participate in a number of notable residencies including the Frances Hodgkins Fellowship in 2003, the International Studio and Curatorial Program in New York in 2007 and the Creative New Zealand Berlin Visual Artists Residency at the Kunstlerhaus Bethanien in 2008/09. Hughes has undertaken a range of high profile public commissions including a temporary installation entitled Heat Wave at Federation Square in Melbourne in 2010. In 2013/14 she completed two large-scale permanent works for the ANZ Bank lobby in Auckland as well as a series of striking outdoor works for the re-opening of Cathedral Square in the centre of Christchurch, as part of the post-earthquake redevelopment. Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Sara Hughes since 2004.
Colour is part of my visual language. It’s not that I use colour so I must always use it but I do think about how colour is read and understood. It interests me how people respond physically to colour – joy, happiness, that ‘Oh wow, look at that!’ response, but if you think of different political movements and the colours associated with them or if you think of certain situations where colour is an intense experience, it goes past that level as well. In painting or on computers, the use of colour raises questions about how we view and understand the world. We think text is powerful – which it is – but you are also reading the colour on web pages. Whether it is in an image or not, you are reading colour information.
Sara Hughes, quoted by Sally Blundell, NZ Listener (June 2014)
Colour Codes, 2011, Gow Langsford Gallery Lorne Street. Photography: Tobias Kraus
Colour, form and composition – classic issues of painting – dominate Hughes’ work, which often takes the form of site-specific installations. The three factors are linked to themes familiar to each and every one of us in today’s world: world-wide systems with a constantly increasing influence on everyday life, like computer viruses, fast-food chains, alliances between nations and their symbolic representation, the financial system with its ever-changing values, and more generally diverse types of statistics. Their considerable media presence enables the latter to convey the idea of measuring various conditions in the world. The fact that she manages to focus on painterly means despite the great complexity of her thematic starting points highlights the quality of Hughes’ work.
Christina Végh, Contemporary Echo Chamber, Sara Hughes: Feedback Runaway, Verlag (2009) p.13
Float, Flip, Pop (detail), 2015. Left: Flag Wall, 2014, Cathederal Square, Christchurch. Photography: John Collie
Moondust, 2015 acrylic on canvas 1200 x 900mm 102
Twinkle, 2015 acrylic on canvas 1200 x 900mm 103
Simon Ingram works within a field of contemporary experimental painting whose form draws on 1960/70s computer based arts and twentieth century abstraction. Over the last seven years he has exhibited in numerous galleries and museums such as Frankfurter Kunstverein (Germany), Artspace (Australia), The Centre for Contemporary NonObjective Art (Belgium), The Kunstverein Medienturm (AT), PS1/MoMA (USA), The Adam Art Gallery (Wellington, NZ). His work is held in prestigious New Zealand private and public collections including the The Chartwell Trust. Simon Ingram has exhibited with Gow Langsford Gallery since 2008.
The place and act of painting in Ingram’s work is hosted in the public sphere. The actual painting of the canvas is a spectacle outside the studio, dislocated from the subjectivity of the artist and the romantic atelier. Adding to the intertextualities in the project’s mode of address, the translation of radio waves into steady, albeit ham-fisted marks problematises abstraction rather than aesthetising it. And at a time when contemporary painting relies so heavily on haptic qualities to affect viewers, Ingram removes his hand and locates materiality, not in the thingness of the painting but in the motorised apparatus that moves over its surface.
Michelle Grabner, Painting Machines, Bielefeld: Kerber Verlag (2014) p. 128
By deferring to the machinic, by tuning his antennae towards the ether, by translating sound waves into computer code, Ingram allows that he (and we) are enmeshed within a much larger system. His works demonstrate, in both their mode of making and as finished products, the subtle, irrevocable connections between organic and manmade, technological and human, abstract and animate, visible and invisible, coded and real. He lets things show us something about themselves and reminds us that our minds and bodies are closer to nature and to machines than we might like to imagine.
Christina Barton, Painting Machines, Bielefeld: Kerber Verlag (2014), p.6
Above: Paintings of the Sun, 2015, Gow Langsford Gallery Lorne St. Right: Radio Painting Station, 2014-15, JAR, Kingsland. Photography: Tobias Kraus. Courtesy of the Chartwell Collection, Auckland Art Gallery, Toi o Tamaki. Below: Ebino, 2011. Photography: Tobias Kraus
Interactive installation at Towns in need of Love, Water Tower Art Fest 2015, Sofia, Bulgaria
The Others, 2015 oil on canvas 1000 x 900mm 109
With his choice of media as broad as his diverse subject matter, Gregor Kregar’s sculptural works can be separated into two parallel lines of enquiry. Loosely grouped as the figurative and geometric works, both have received critical acclaim here and abroad. His established career spans more than two decades and he continues to exhibit regularly in Australasia and Europe. Highlights of his exhibition history include a solo show at Tin Shed Gallery as a collateral event of the 16th Sydney Biennale in 2008 and inclusion in the Cairo Biennale and the 29th Ljubljana Biennale in 2011. His work is held in significant public collections including Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand, The Chartwell Collection and the Wallace Arts Trust. The recipient of several awards and commissions Kregar has won, amongst others, the Melbourne-based 2015 Southern Way McClelland Commission (2013), the Lexus Premier Award as well as People’s Choice Awards at Headland Sculpture on the Gulf (2013), Paramount Award, Wallace Art Awards (2000); a permanent installation at the Christchurch International Airport (2012), the Art Omni Residency at McColl Art Centre New York, USA (2006) and a commission for a permanent work at the Lekhwiya Sports Stadium in Doha (2013). Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Gregor Kregar since 2009.
Gregor Kregar enjoys stirring up trouble – object trouble. He relishes the chance to question and mix up existing meanings when dealing with familiar objects – be they domestic rubbish, piggy banks, wine bottles, garden gnomes or television sets. He strips away ingrained habitual knowledge, exposes surprising histories and elevates the insignificant object to new heights, even to the extent of revealing people’s domestic obsessions such as gardening, pet and car ownership as examples of religious fervour. In an early series, he (anti-) heroically immortalised himself in bronze, posed in miniature on high plinths in the style of Rodin and Michelangelo.
Sue Gardiner, The Riddle of Being Gregor, Between Ridiculous and Sublime, artists catalogue (2005)
Gregor Kregarâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s studio, 2015. Photography: Tobias Kraus. Left: Reflective Habitat, 2013, Brick Bay Sculpture Trail. Photography: Hannah Valentine
Kregarâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s art mixed up idealism, irreverence, intellectual rigour and elementary or everyday actions, exploiting the energy or resonance that arise from the collisions, tensions or confusions between these modes of thinking. As a view, one ends up thinking about the fact that one cannot decide exactly what it is one it thinking.
Ed Hanfling, Seriously Entertainment, Art New Zealand 151 (2014) p. 73-74 114
Clouds For Richard Pearse, 2012, Christchurch Airport. Photography: Waynne Williams. Left: Fragmented Illuminations, 2013, Gow Langsford Gallery Lorne Street. Photography: Gregor Kregar
Neon Cloud, 2014 aluminium, automotive paint and custom-made neon lights 2050 x 1500 x 1500mm 117
hye rim lee
B. 1963, KR
Hye Rim Lee’s projects are ambitious and technically refined. Working across several new-media platforms her works include 3D animation, digital photography, sculpture and performance. Broadly speaking her works combine elements of Eastern and Western popular culture and cyber trends, questioning technology’s role in image making and how this influences tradition. Her animations invite us to become enveloped by the world of TOKI – Lee’s magical, mythical, 3D character. TOKI, a bunny, is provocative, bashful and cute - a personification of desire. In these works she questions the perception of female identity and the conventions of the traditionally maledominated worlds of gaming and 3D animation. Since she began exhibiting in 2002 Hye Rim Lee has exhibited widely in Europe, the USA and the Asia Pacific. Her exhibition history includes inclusion in shows at Minsheng Art Museum, Shanghai (2014), Trondheim Kunstmuseum, Trondheim, Norway (2013); Buk Seoul Museum of Art, SeMA, Seoul, Korea (2013); The National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts, Taipei, Taiwan (2012); Festival Miradas de Mujeres, Madrid, Spain(2012); San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose, USA (2010); and in a collateral event of the 54th Venice Biennale (Future Pass, Palazzo Mangilli-Valmarana, Venice, 2011) and the 53rd Venice Biennale (Glasstress Palazzo Cavalli Franchetti, Venice, 2009). Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Hye Rim Lee since 2013.
Above: Black Rose Queen (detail), 2014. Below: Strawberry Garden (still), 2011. Left: Lucid Dream, Black Rose, Glass Box, Gow Langsford Gallery Kitchener Street. Photography: Paul Nathan
As a meditation on feminism in the technological age, Lee’s body of work echoes theorist Donna Haraway’s views on cyborg feminism, and its potential to resist biologically-determined and essentialist narratives that subjugate the female body and its images. Lee’s work negotiates a multitude of binaries from ‘nostalgia/ futurism’ to ‘sentience/automatism’ but most significantly it addresses the binary of Madonna/whore which casts women’s maternal role and their sexuality as mutually exclusive. Beneath the glossy surface of these seemingly puerile images lies a radical critique of sexism. Lee does not merely play a man’s game: she hijacks the whole enterprise and re-writes the rules of engagement according to her own terms.
John Mutambu, Hye Rim Lee: Voicing the Visible, Gus Fisher Gallery (2014)
Crystal Mushrooms, 2015 C print edition of 5 560 x 1000mm 121
Richard Lewer is a self-described contemporary social realist. The subjects of his evocative paintings, animations and drawings are drawn from extremes of everyday life. From events of crime and tragedy, to sporting situations or traditions of the religious fraternities, his works are accessible, familiar, with a critical edge that probes what is beautiful and sinister about our society without injecting a moralizing tone or political message. Lewer has been exhibiting for more than twenty years and has an established reputation in Australasia. His exhibition history includes exhibitions at the National Gallery of Victoria (Melbourne 2013, 2012, 2011), Perth Institute of Contemporary Art (PICA) Perth (2012), Canberra Contemporary Art Centre (2006) and the Adam Art Gallery (Wellington, New Zealand) (2003). He is the recipient of many awards, including the Black Swan Portraiture Award, Perth (2013), National Works on Paper Drawing Award, Mornington Peninsula, Victoria (2010), Maddocks Venice Art Award, Melbourne (2008) and the Wallace Art Paramount Award, Auckland (2008). His works are held in the collections of the Art Gallery of South Australia, Monash University Museum of Art, Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand, National Gallery of Australia and the National Gallery of Victoria. Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Richard Lewer since 2013.
I just think they [art and sport] are so intertwined and close, and I always have. When I was at art school, I was a bit embarrassed by the idea that I had my tennis racquet underneath the table, but the connection for me has always been so strong. When I started boxing, I was training at five in the morning and five at night alongside professional boxers, and that’s when I saw that what they were doing in terms of skill and training was exactly what I’d be doing in the studio. And that’s where that connection became really clear to me. Rebecca Gallo interview with Richard Lewer, Vault Magazine, Issue 09 (2015)
The Custom of the Sea, 2015, St. Paul Street Gallery. Photography: Tobias Kraus. Right: I support two teams..the All Blacks and whoeverâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s playing the Wallabies, 2014
Richard Lewer’s artistic output over the years reveals that he has always been attracted to extremes of behaviour, beliefs and experience in the context of our everyday lives. Ghosts, stalkers, criminals, nuns and those who have simply failed, doubted, or triumphed over life’s moral struggles have all resided there, as has the abiding truth of our mortality—and our attempts to come to terms with it.
Kyla McFarlane, God Created Me in his Own Image, exhibition catalogue (2013)
In the Blue Corner, 2014 14 part installation: 11 x paintings, oil on board 1 x HD video, 3minutes 40 seconds 1 x mixed media assemblage dimensions variable
Allen Maddox’s work stands out from that of his peers. Although only in his early fifties at the time of his death in 2000, Maddox remains an important and powerful figure within the history of New Zealand painting. His ardent and impassioned paintings established him as one of the most noted Abstract Expressionists this country has ever produced. In his lifetime Maddox produced a comprehensive body of work that is broadly characterised by an uncompromisingly bold and expressive style, and a seemingly obsessive use of the cross and grid motifs. His persistent combination of a formal structural element - the cross and/or grid - with free gesture has myriad interpretations, but it is the paradox buried in the relationship between order and expressionism that lends Maddox’s works their seemingly boundless dynamism. Gow Langsford Gallery represented Allen Maddox from 1987 and continues to represent his estate.
Though few people really knew Allen Maddox and his story essentially died with him, as stories do, he left the world a raft of very fine art that will travel the ages. New Zealand will be proud to own Allen Maddox, dead famous artist, before too long. Richard McWhannell, Allen Maddox: Painter, Allen Maddox, Gow Langsford Gallery (2006) p.34
The ‘X’ shaped crosses appeared most obviously as negations, but had the simultaneous effect of filling in boxes – making a positive content of marks. The in-fill marks, in turn, attracted and may have intentionally broadcast other meanings. As well as ‘crossing-out’, such symbolic meanings have accommodated literal interpretations: ‘X-marks-the-spot’, the ‘X-means-yes’ with which multiple choice questionnaires are marked, and even, especially later in Maddox’s life, a partial reference to the ‘X’ symbol for Jesus Christ – possibly too… kisses.
Ian Wedde, Hung Drawn and Quartered: The Paintings of Allen Maddox, Allen Maddox, Gow Langsford Gallery (2006) p.13 For Alexis (detail), 1993
Bysshe’s Eagle (ochre & turquoise), 1995 oil on canvas 910 x 910mm
As painted marks – as physical gestures accomplished through an articulated extension of the artist’s line-of-sight – the crosses and grids were most often composed of glances and of glancing strokes, swerves, stabs and smears, whose built-up effect was to create, through their own limitations, the confining limits of subsequent gestures and thus of subsequent vision. Sight that began swiftly, even athletically, swerving and ducking, was blocked and blinded. What began as nimble, fleet, emphatic and decisive ended by becoming inevitable, even trapped. The confident structures of the ‘crosses in boxes’ became cells whose claustrophobic limits seemed to build a mutinous tension.
Ian Wedde, Hung Drawn and Quartered: The Paintings of Allen Maddox, Allen Maddox, Gow Langsford Gallery (2006) p.13-17
B. 1964, NZ
Ever faithful to his garden subject, Karl Maughan is a muchloved New Zealand painter who continues to captivate his audiences with his contemporary interpretations of an ageold subject. Based on a large archive of images taken in New Zealand and abroad, Maughan’s scenes are fabricated adding a mystical quality to his vistas. Although his work titles sometimes reveal specific locations, these works have no specific geography. His works have been exhibited in Saatchi Collection Catalogue Show at the Saatchi Gallery, London (1998), Stop Making Sense, City Gallery, Wellington (1995) and his solo exhibition Walking in Light at Vertigo Gallery, London (2003). His paintings are widely collected by private patrons and his largest painting to date, A clear day (1999), is in the permanent collection of Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand. A recent career highlight was a survey style exhibition, A Clear Day at Pataka Museum (2015). Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Karl Maughan since 1987.
Surely there are few New Zealand artists whose works are as instantly recognisable as the hyper-real canvases of Karl Maughan, whose paintings of gardens have become a kind of cultural landmark. Despite their heightened colour and densely ordered composition, they carry a paradoxical sense of something darker as well, a sense of vague menace that the subject matter and handling ought not be allowed to convey. (Clayton, 2013) “I’ve got this great analogy, well, one I like anyway. It’s like saying to a writer, surely you’ve said everything you want to in English, don’t you want to write in another language? There’s a lot of language in a garden and I’ve never run out of ideas (Maughan, 2013).”
Hamish Clayton, There’s alot of language in a garden (2013) Artist file, Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
Auckland Art Fair, 2011. Right: Riverhead (detail), 2013. Overleaf: The Stranger (8 panels), 2001. SKYCITY Grand Hotel Photography: Tobias Kraus
Omokoroa, 2015 oil on canvas 1300 x 2400mm 139
Through a combination of processes including hydrostatic pressure, Sculptor David McCracken toys with our perception of material forms. Many of his key pieces are whimsical and illusionistic and works often appear to transcend their physicality – dense works appear light, solid works appear malleable, impenetrable surfaces appear pliable. Industrial forms are often enlarged to a bodily scale – a transition that adds a sense of sophistication, as utilitarian or otherwise banal forms are elevated into memorable objects.
The appeal of McCracken’s sculptures is in the relationship between their blunt, physical presence - the raw act of manipulating mundane materials - and their more sensuous, aesthetic qualities.
His use of stainless steel, with its alluring reflective qualities, and Corten steel, which reacts with its atmospheric conditions, amplifies an awareness of surrounding materiality and texture. The relationship between an austere physical presence and more sensuous aesthetic qualities gives McCracken’s sculptures their conceptual efficacy and refined compositions their striking elegance.
Edward Hanfling , Art New Zealand, Issue 116, (2005) p.51
David McCracken mounted his first solo exhibition in 2000 and has been exhibiting throughout New Zealand since. His works have been included in many outdoor exhibitions including Headland Sculpture on the Gulf, Shapeshifter and Sculpture in the Gardens. In 2013 he was recipient of the Parsons & Brinckerhoff Award for Excellence in Engineering at Headland Sculpture on the Gulf and in 2014 received the Wallace Arts Trust Vermont Award. Gow Langsford Gallery has represented David McCracken since 2009.
Diminish and Ascend, 2013. Sculpture by the Sea, Bondi Beach, Australia, 2013. Photography: Paul McKeown Overleaf: Installation view at Sculpture on the Gulf, Waiheke, 2015. Photography: Tobias Kraus
Above: Sculpture on the Gulf, Waiheke, 2013. Below: Emotionally unsaturated, 2014. Gow Langsford Gallery Kitchener Street Right: Private commission, Queenstown, 2015
Incendiary Artwork, 2015 stainless steel 1500 x 500 x 500mm
Central to Judy Millar’s painting practice is an on-going investigation into the role of painting and its efficacy as means of communication. More recent works are increasingly architectural and consider the confluences of painting, printing and three-dimensionality. With an established international exhibition history, Millar is one of New Zealand’s most internationally recognised and wellregarded artists. She represented New Zealand at the 53rd Venice Bienniale with her solo exhibition Giraffe-Bottle-Gun (2009) and exhibited in the Collateral Event Time, Space, Existence of the 54th Venice Biennale (2011). Her work was the subject of two major exhibitions at the Auckland Art Gallery (2002) and the IMA, Brisbane (2013). Her career continues to gain momentum in Europe, where she has shown at several museums including Rohkunstbau, Berlin (2010) and GASK, Gallery of Central Bohemia, Czech Republic (2013). Her paintings are held in all major public collections in New Zealand and in several international collections including the Kunstmuseum St Gallen and Tichy Foundation in Prague. Available monographs on her work includeYou You Me Me (Kerber Art, Germany, 2009),Giraffe-Bottle Gun (Kerber Art, Germany, 2009) and Be Do Be Do Be Do (IMA, Brisbane). In 2015 Millar co-produced the children’s popup book Swell. Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Judy Millar since the gallery began in 1987.
Looking across Millar’s career, it is as if she steadily releases painting towards its full capacities. First, she expands into larger and larger canvases; then, the wall around the canvas is painted, as if they are unable to confine the paint; then, the canvas comes off the walls and onto freestanding supports, then, finally, they sit in space, in the form of shaped supports, huge ribbons, and scaffolded sculptures. This spatial exuberance is then paired with the enormous blown-up brushstroke.
Rosemary Hawker, Judy Millar, be do be do be do, IMA (2013) p.2
All images: Judy Millar: The Model World, 2015, Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery. Photography: Simon Devitt
Otira, 2015 oil on linen 1550 x 1050mm
B. 1977, IE
Alex Monteithâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s works derive from diverse social and cultural activities and contemporary sports, and often features those taking place in large-scale or extreme geographies. Through actions, performances, situations and time-based media such as film, video and sound, the works explore territorial, political and physical thresholds. Through her work, Monteith penetrates the physical and psychological space of individual and collective performative action. Highlights of her career to date include the major survey exhibition Accelerated Geographies at the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery (2010), a solo exhibition at the MMK Museum fĂźr Moderne Kunst Frankfurt am Main, Germany (curated by Leonard Emmerling and Bernd Riess, 2012) and inclusion in Contact: Artists from Aotearoa/New Zealand at Frankfurter Kunstverein (2012). She has an upcoming solo exhibition Big Wave Ireland at Niland Gallery and Model Arts, Sligo, Ireland (2016). Monteith was a finalist in the 2010 Walters Prize and was awarded an Arts Foundation of New Zealand New Generation Award in 2008. Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Alex Monteith since 2013.
Above, left: Surface Movements Mt Maunganui, 2014. Performance documentation. Photography: Sean Joyce and Sarah Munro. Below: Installation view, Surface Movements Mt Maunganui in Big Wave Aotearoa, Tauranga Art Gallery, 2014
Murihiku, 2014-ongoing series. Multi-channel video installation stills,Â Wet Jacket Arm andÂ Supper Cove, Tamatea Dusky Sound, 2014
My practice is essentially post-object and post-studio in orientation. Simultaneously it often reflects on the politics, limits and freedoms of contemporary human activity at the threshold of geographical or territorial extremes. In particular, I am interested in cultures whose activity-base is sensitive â&#x20AC;&#x201C; radically sensitive â&#x20AC;&#x201C; to the physicality of larger landscapes. 159
Artist statement 2010
Antonio Muradoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s studio, 2015. Photography: Cristina Arias Bal
B. 1964, ES
Murado's canvases are feats of technical virtuosity, demonstrating his facility with paint and ability to create paintings that are at once both abstract and representational… Murado is interested in the idea that our eye seeks recognizable forms, finding a visual narrative where there are only brushstrokes. Antonio Murado. Terras, Wall St International online (2013)
Oscillating between abstraction and representation, Spanish painter Antonio Murado explores his interest in nature, both in his subject matter and in the material nature of his chosen medium. His abstracted landscapes or flower subjects are the result of a complex and refined painting process. Murado creates conditions under which materials are made to perform and react. Relying on the chemical nature of his chosen materials, elements are put down in layers and then subsequently worked on with refined techniques. A turpentine-soaked brush will touch over thick paint, allowing an element of chance to unfold on the surface, which is then re-worked and managed. There is an intuitive process of observation that guides what to add, what to remove and what remains. Diluted pigment is blown to form delicate petals which seem to float on the surface of the work. With this extraordinary technical finesse, Murado achieves great depth and emotion. Murado’s paintings are now held in prominent museum, corporate, and private collections including The Galician Center of Contemporary Art, Santiago de Compostela, Spain; The Museum of Fine Art, Vitoria, Spain; The Nagasaki Art Museum, Japan; and in Collections of Phillip Morris, American Express, Chase Manhattan Bank, AXA, Pfizer, and The Coca-Cola Corporation. Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Antonio Murado since 1997.
Eilidh, 2012-14. Left: Untitled (detail), 2015
Coto, 2015 oil on canvas 1220 x 1715mm 164
Paisaxe Americano, 2015 oil on canvas 1280 x 1790mm 165
B.1973, NZ (Ngati Rangitihi and Ngai Tuhoe)
Known for his creations in glitter, Reuben Paterson is a dynamic painter with an esteemed exhibition history. Although his subjects are varied – from the earlier series considering his cultural heritage, to works engaging in social commentary and his more recent animal portraits – his painting practice is centred on ideas of patterning and materials. Paterson has exhibited extensively in public galleries in Australasia and internationally, he has been included in shows at the Musee du quai Branly, Paris, France (2011), Cambridge University of Anthropology and Archaeology Cambridge, England (2007), and the International Biennale of Contemporary Art, National Gallery, Prague (2007). He has undertaken major commissions for the Auckland Art Gallery’s education centre (2012) and for the 6th Asia Pacific Triennial at the Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane (2009). In recent years he has extended his practice to include sculpture; his work The Golden Promise is a now permanently installed at Massey University’s Albany campus. Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Reuben Paterson since 2003.
In learning how to live “from the vantage point of the ever-changing present”, Paterson’s works remind us of our connections to the past and how that influences our role in the future. Contained on a canvas like bottled lightening, they challenge our perception and control of the present as a state of flow, an analogy for capturing the elusive creative process as it shifts between boredom and inspiration. This defines how we walk in a spiritual landscape that is as fleeting and as fluid as the flow of light and water that shapes our perception of the spaces we inhabit, or the shifting sands under our feet that mark the passing of people and their accumulation in our memories.
Andrew Clifford, Bottled Lightning, Gus Fisher Gallery (2012) p. 16
Reuben Paterson’s studio, 2014. Photography: Sally Tagg courtesy of NZ House and Garden magazine
Get Down on Your Knees Please, 2009/15 glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas edition of 36, each unique 330mm framed diameter 170
Photography: Glenn Frei. Previous spread: Reuben Paterson’s studio, 2014. Photography: Bridget Webber
B. 1962, NU
John Puleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s enigmatic paintings have attracted international attention and have been extensively exhibited since the mid1990s. His poetry informs his painting practice and both are filled with narratives of his own personal mythology. The content is often intentionally challenging and provocative - calamity, death and injurious relationships between Pacific peoples and settlers, particularly in his homeland of Niue, appear frequently. More recently Pule expanded his commentary to include more global concerns. Where his works were once read as uniquely Pacific these works advocate more universal fears and collective visions. Pule is one of the Pacificâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s most significant artists and is a prominent cultural figure in the Asia Pacific region. His works are held in major public collections in Australasia including Auckland Art Gallery, Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand, The National Gallery of Victoria and Queensland Art Gallery. Career highlights include a survey exhibition at the City Gallery Wellington (2010) and inclusion in exhibitions at Museo de Atre Contemporaneo, Santiago, Chile (2012), Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane (2011) and the Neuer Berliner Kunstverein, Berlin (2007). His work is the subject of several books including the monograph Hauaga (Otago University Press, 2010). Pule is also a published writer and poet. He was the recipient of the New Zealand Order of Merit for the services to the arts in 2012. Gow Langsford Gallery has represented John Pule since 1994. 173
These [oceanic] paintings, I suppose, become a part of that world of exploration and the present world. I wanted to create a world of lushness in strange plants, landscapes, loves, people engaging with visitors, showing off idols, pulling two-headed mammals from the sea, large whales. And for me in creating these works the times of meeting on beaches has shifted to airport lounges and electronic security surveillance, gigantic alcohol and cosmetic stores, and the foul concoction of perfumes that greet us. These paintings show these worlds in various stages of changes, of violence, a hell of a lot of fucking, religious motifs, and angels taking part in sexual orgies.
John Pule in conversation with Nicholas Thomas, The Oceans are unforgiving, John Pule: Hauaga, Otago University Press, in association with City Gallery, Wellington (2010) p.55 175
This page and overleaf: John Puleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Studio, 2015. Photography: Tobias Kraus. Left: The Home and the World (detail), 2011
Distant Future, 2015 oil, varnish, ink, enamels and resin on canvas 760 x 1015mm 177
B. 1974, NZ
New Zealand-born Jono Rotman is based in San Fransisco. In his often unsettling images he mines edge states and points of transition. Among his subjects in New Zealand are sites of incarceration and gangs. In America, he is exploring the decline of empire. His often large-scale works of subjects great and terrible are a controlled meditation on the sublime. He was awarded the Arts Foundation’s Marti Friedlander Photographic Award in 2013. His 2015 exhibition Jono Rotman: Mongrel Mob Portraits at the City Gallery, Wellington reflects a growing interest in his work and solidifies his position as a leading contemporary photographer. Jono Rotman first exhibited at Gow Langsford Gallery in 2014.
One of the functions of art is to transmit a reality that might be marginalised or missed in the cacophony of glib stimuli vying for our attention. Jono Rotman has carefully, respectfully insinuated himself into the culture of gangs, earning their trust. That trust is embodied in his Mongrel Mob Portraits. His subjects’ faces, tattoos, and insignia signify their alienation and marginalisation from mainstream society. The image of gangs portrayed to the general public is the incarnation of the white man’s worst nightmare, the emergence of a threatening monster from the ashes of the ‘noble savage’ portrayed by Lindauer and Goldie. These portraits challenge us to ask: what are the hidden and untold stories that underlie them? Dr. Ranginui Walker, Jono Rotman: Mongrel Mob Portraits, City Gallery (2015)
Photography: Adam Custins. Right: Sean Wellington and Sons, 2009
Rotman works to strip away this generalised, media-generated image of gang identity. He uses the camera not to safely present or titillate normalised society with its criminal other but to set up a direct and confrontational encounter with a specific individual. Aaron Lister, Exchange: Jono Rotmanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Mongrel Mob Portraits, Jono Rotman: Mongrel Mob Portraits, City Gallery, Wellington (2015)
Gow Langsford Gallery Lorne Street, 2014
Aaron Rogue, 2009 C-type photograph edition of 3 1500 x 1200mm
Bernar Venet’s practice has been characterized by an enduring but evolutional engagement with mathematical precision and its contradictory counterpart, the uncertain. The French conceptual artist has made pioneering contributions to the discourse of sculptural practice and has emerged as one of the most significant international artists of his era. Notable highpoints include a solo exhibition Venet à Versailles at The Palace of Versailles, Château de Marly, France (2011), following which the French postal service issued a commemorative stamp of the artist’s 22-metre Vertical Arcs that were included in the exhibition. In 2012, a major retrospective of his work was shown at the Müscarnok Museum in Budapest, Hungary. A biographical note on Bernar Venet is now included in the Larousse Dictionary, which became available to the public in June 2012. The same year, he was approached by luxury car manufacturer Bugatti to design a unique, one-of-a-kind Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport. He is the recipient of several awards including the International Julio González Sculpture Prize (2013), a Commandeur dans l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the Minister of Culture in France (1996), Grand Prix des Arts de la Ville de Paris (1989) and in early 2005 Venet was awarded France’s highest decoration, Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur, for his enhancement to the reputation of France through arts. In 2012 Venet’s tallest work 88.5° Arc x 8 (27 metres tall) sculpture was permanently installed on the Gibbs’ Farm near Auckland. In 2014 Venet launched the Venet Foundation in the small town of Le Muy in Southern France.
“It is not art if it doesn’t change the history of art,” Bernar Venet once said. His aim as an artist has always been to make pieces that raise questions and that bring something new to the art world. At the back of his mind is always the thought: “Can I show that as a work of art?” The challenge is to convince people that it’s possible and to have it accepted, to one day see it in books and museums. “It’s the only goal, actually,” he admits. “Making something that is already understood and accepted by the art world is boring.”
Y-Jean Mun-Delsalle, French Conceptual Artist Bernar Venet Launches The Venet Foundation In Southeast France, Forbes Magazine (Sep 2014)
Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Bernar Venet since 2006. 184
Photography: Archives Bernar Venet, New York
Trios lignes indeterminees, 1993, Le Champs-de-Mars, Paris. Right: Arcs in Disorder: 3 Arcs x 5â&#x20AC;?, 2008. Beaumont St, Auckland
88.5째 ARC x 8, 2012, Gibbs Farm, Kaipara Harbour
Above: 84 Arcs / Désordre, Jardins du Palais du Pharo, Marseille, France. Below: 85.8° Arc x 16, 2011, Place d’Armes, Château de Versailles, France
Characterised by a lyrical painting style and a cast of hybrid characters, painter John Walsh has an established reputation in New Zealand. Although the narratives of his works are often based on historical events and figures, a lightness of touch lends his surfaces a familiar mystical reading. His works are held in many public and private collections throughout the country including the Wallace Arts Collection, Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand, the Sarjeant Gallery Collection and the Jean Marie Tjibaou Cultural Centre Collection in Noumea, New Caledonia. Gow Langsford Gallery has represented John Walsh since 2001.
John Walsh likes telling stories. His art imagines other worlds. Strange landscapes and dreamscapes where primal beings, gods and monsters clash in an epic struggle for control of a Maori Middle Earth. Walsh thinks that one way into the worlds he creates is to look with fresh eyes at the past.
Cushla Parekowhai. Real Art Road Show exhibition essay online 190
Above, right: The Reverend Turkish Nightingale sings his daily requim (detail), 2015. Below: Untitled, 2013
Untitled, 2015 oil on board 1200 x 1200mm
A painter of liquid skies and fluid landscapes, hybrid creatures and mischievous gods, Walsh intertwines Maori mythology, history and contemporary events with satirical ire. Marakihau (mer-men) and manaia (birdmen helpers/knowledge-bringers) appear alongside human travellers, sleepers, thieves and reporters. These characters interact across vast landscapes, skies, and oceans. “Walsh uses earth and galaxy to depict quintessential fears of communication, and raises important questions about finding a place in the world - why we must keep fighting to survive, why we must keep caring”, says John Pule. Anna Lee, Dowse Art Museum exhibition text (2009)
Photography: Thomas Teutenberg
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Gregor Kregar, Fragmented Echo, Headland Sculpture on the Gulf 2015, Waiheke. Photography: Tobias Kraus
Tony Cragg, wt(Grey Stone) (detail), 2011
Published by Gow Langsford Gallery to coincide with the exhibition Spring Catalogue 2015 at Gow Langsford Gallery, Lorne St, 16 September - 10 October 2015 ISBN: 978-0-9864630-8-2 Image credits, inside front cover, left: Sara Hughes, Twinkle (detail), 2015. Right: James Cousins, Untitled (pl 552) (detail), 2015. Overleaf: Judy Millar, Otira (detail), 2015. Photography: Tobias Kraus. Inside back cover, left: Graham Fletcher, Untitled (Yellow Arc) (detail), 2015. Photography: Holly MacKinven. Right: Tony Craggâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Studio, 2015. Photography: Gary Langsford. Previous page: Katharina Grosse, Untitled Trumpet (detail), 2015, Photography: Nic Tenwiggenhorn Photography: Tobias Kraus, unless otherwise stated. www.tobiaskraus.com Design: Hannah Valentine for Gow Langsford Gallery Publication coordinator: Anna Jackson Text: Anna Jackson, unless otherwise stated Printed in China by Everbest Printing Co. We apologize if, due to reasons beyond our control, some of the photo sources have not been listed. ÂŠ 2015 All text and images copyright the artists and authors and Gow Langsford Gallery All rights reserved This publication is copyright. Except for the purpose of fair review, no part may be stored or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including reading or storage in any information retrieval systems, without permission in writing from the publisher. No reproduction may be made, whether by photocopying or other means, unless a licence has been obtained from the publisher or its agent.
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