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REUBEN PATERSON

THANKS DARKNESS

17 October - 10 November 2013

MARTIN BROWNE CONTEMPORARY 15 HAMPDEN STREET PADDINGTON NSW 2021 TEL: 02 9331 7997 FAX: 02 9331 7050 info@martinbrownecontemporary.com www.martinbrownecontemporary.com GALLERY HOURS: TUESDAY - SUNDAY 10:30AM - 6PM


© Martin Browne Contemporary © All images copyright Reuben Paterson This catalogue is copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purposes of private study, research, criticism or review as permitted under the Copyright Act, no part may be reproduced by any process without written permission. COMPILER: Hilary Perrett PHOTOGRAPHY: Bridget Webber and Gil Hanly COLOUR SEPARATIONS: Spitting Image, Sydney PRINTING: Oxygen, Sydney Cover Image: Thanks Green, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas, 120 x 120 cm


List of Works

Thanks Red, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas, 152 x 152 cm Thanks Orange, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas, 120 x 120 cm Thanks Dark Yellow, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas, tondo, 150 cm diameter Thanks Yellow, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas, 100 x 100 cm Thanks Green, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas, 120 x 120 cm Thanks Moss Green, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas, tondo, 120 cm diameter Thanks Blue, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas,100 x 100 cm Thanks Dark Blue, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas, 190 x 190 cm Thanks Purple, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas, 80 x 80 cm Thanks Indigo, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas, tondo, 120 cm diameter Thanks Violet, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas, 120 x 120 cm Thanks Black, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas, tondo, 120 cm diameter Thanks White, 2013, glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas, 100 x 100 cm


REUBEN PATERSON | THANKS DARKNESS The thirteen works in Reuben Paterson’s Thanks Darkness signal their intentions through the simple rainbow code that defines their structure and sequence, echoing the ROYGBIV colour system that evolves from red to orange, traditionally ending with violet but also here including black and white. Thanks Darkness is based on the visible colour spectrum defined by Isaac Newton but perhaps better known in pop culture through Storm Thorgerson’s iconic design for the 1973 Pink Floyd album Dark Side of the Moon (released the same year the artist was born). Thorgerson’s image could be read in two ways – that the coloured beams of light have combined to create a pure white projection, or that the white light has been broken down into component parts. It suggests that a reduction or division of light can reveal hidden qualities, activated by the darkness rather than obscured by the glare of excess information or illumination. Like the dark side of the moon, which has become a fertile location of imagined existences, a lack of light creates a void of information in which there are infinite possibilities. Darkness becomes a space of mystery and potential. Paterson’s new monochromatic works operate within a similar negative space, projecting only a single colour where once there was an image, and refracting the light that is projected at it. There is a symbiotic relationship between light and dark, defined in relationship to each other and activating the works in equal measure. Light derives power from darkness, just as death needs time for what it kills to grow in (to paraphrase a line from William S. Burroughs). The monochromes each contain manipulations of texture and scale, making them a sculptural proposition, defined only through the casting of shadows, which are revealed through light and time as we explore them with bodily motion. Although Paterson’s work has always invited viewers to activate the prismatic light effects of his glittered work through movement and engagement, with the concealed designs of his new works he forces the issue. These are reluctant performers that offer little more than a space for the viewer to find themselves, offering just fleeting glimpses of its own make-up.


Key to the deployment of pure colour, activated by light, is the inclusion of a white monochrome, suggesting a further reduction but also a maximum of potential, not least because white is the result of all colours being present in an RGB (additive) colour system. Similarly, black is created by the presence of all colours in a CMYK (subtractive) colour system, depicted here as a kaleidoscopic tondo painting centred on a black void. In New Zealand art history, black is also synonymous with preeminent modernist painter, Ralph Hotere, whose work speaks of spiritual origins through the Maori creation story of Te Kore (the void), Te Po (the night), and the subsequent phases of darkness that lead to the first dawn and Te Ao Marama – the world of light. From darkness, the emergence of light reveals a new day. But whereas Hotere’s black is heightened by strategic deployment of colour, Paterson works with the whole spectrum, activated by shadows to reveal and define details. For Paterson, whose paintings gain their effect from the synthetic material of mylar plastic glitter, light is also the result of technology, which has allowed cities to overcome the power of the night. Anchored by the five monochromes (red, yellow, blue, purple and white), the remaining works are interspersed to create a progression as an exploration of flux, not so much merging from one to the next as a homogenised blend but acknowledging what has gone before and what comes next, retaining elements of the past and future to create the present. Paterson’s flamboyant fabric designs are still embedded in every work but their suggestion of a rainbow world of high camp is more layered than ever, having always been melancholic in tone as a reflection on mortality. Their celebratory motifs are an acknowledgement of who has passed through the land before us, represented by the mothballed party frocks, shirts or ties of yesteryear, once owned by friends and family and now a symbol of former festivities. Through the passing of light, Paterson presents us with the flow and flux of creativity and mortality, and a reminder of the impossibility of capturing the present as it emerges from and returns to darkness. Andrew Clifford, September 2013


Above: Source image for Thanks Red Right: Thanks Red, 2013 Glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas 152 x 152 cm


Thanks Orange, 2013 Glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas 120 x 120 cm


Thanks Dark Yellow, 2013 Glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas Tondo, 150 cm diameter


Above: Source image for Thanks Yellow Right: Thanks Yellow, 2013 Glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas 100 x 100 cm


Thanks Green, 2013 Glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas 120 x 120 cm


Thanks Moss Green, 2013 Glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas Tondo, 120 cm diameter


Above: Source image for Thanks Blue Right:

Thanks Blue 2013 Glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas 100 x 100 cm


Thanks Dark Blue, 2013 Glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas 190 x 190 cm


Above: Source image for Thanks Purple Right:

Thanks Purple, 2013 Glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas 80 x 80 cm


Thanks Indigo, 2013 Glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas Tondo, 120 cm diameter


Thanks Violet, 2013 Glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas 120 x 120 cm


Thanks Black, 2013 Glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas Tondo, 120 cm diameter


Above: Source image for Thanks White Right: Thanks White, 2013 Glitter and synthetic polymer on canvas 100 x 100 cm


REUBEN PATERSON 1973 Born, Auckland (Ngati Rangitihi, Ngai Tuhoe, Tuhourangi) 1997 Elam School of Fine Arts, The University of Auckland, Bachelor of Fine Arts 2000 Post Graduate Diploma of Teaching, The University of Auckland SELECTED SOLO EXHIBITIONS 2013 - 2006 2013 Earth, Wind & Fire, Nellie Castan Gallery, Melbourne, Australia 2013 Seek to Yield to Find, Brisbane City Council Vibrant Laneways, Edison Lane, Brisbane, Australia 2013 Te Putahitanga o Rehua, Christchurch Art Gallery, Christchurch, New Zealand 2012 Pleasure Seekers, Nellie Castan Gallery, Melbourne 2012 Twice Upon A Time, Gow Langsford Gallery, Auckland, New Zealand 2012 Bottled Lightening, Peloton Gallery, Sydney, Australia 2012 House of Rainbow, Milford Galleries, Dunedin New Zealand 2012 Bottled Lightning, Gus Fisher Gallery, Auckland, New Zealand 2011 Gazillion Swirl! Te Mahi Toi o Reuben Paterson, Education Centre installation, Auckland Art Gallery, New Zealand 2011 FLOW, Nellie Castan Gallery, Melbourne, Australia 2011 Muscles and Ice Cream, WORLD Store, Auckland, New Zealand 2011 Te Putahitanga o Rehua, Te Manawa, Palmerston North, New Zealand 2011 She Beauty, He Beast, Pataka Museum, Porirua, New Zealand 2010 Dear Beauty, Dear Beast, Gow Langsford Gallery, Auckland, New Zealand 2010 Aere e Akamotu – Start to Finish, BCA Gallery, Rarotonga, New Zealand 2010 Whakapapa: get down upon your knees, Tauranga Art Gallery, Tauranga, New Zealand 2010 The Water Between Us, Milford Galleries, Dunedin, New Zealand 2008 Peep Show, Milford Galleries, Queenstown, New Zealand 2008 The Painter’s Lot, Milford Galleries, Dunedin, New Zealand 2007 Reverie, Gow Langsford Gallery, Auckland, New Zealand 2007 When the Sun Rises and the Shadows Flee, Dunedin Public Art Gallery, New Zealand 2007 64zero3 Gallery, Christchurch, New Zealand 2006 He Aha te Mea Nui? What is the Greatest thing? Dunedin Public Art Gallery, New Zealand 2006 Square2, Wellington City Gallery, New Zealand SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS 2013 - 2006 2013 E Tu Ake, Musee de la Civilisation, Quebec City, Canada 2013 Architecture of the Heart, Hawkes Bay Museum, New Zealand 2013 Contemporary Pacific and Asian Art, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia 2013 Flow Riders, Rotorua Museum, New Zealand 2012 E Tu Ake, Museo Nacional Ias Culturas, Mexico City 2011 E Tu Ake, Musee du quai Branly, Paris, France 2011 CURRENT, October Gallery, London, UK 2011 Manstyle, National Gallery of Victoria, Australia 2011 E Tu Ake, Te Papa Tongarewa, Museum of New Zealand 2011 Close Encounters: The Next 500 Years Plug In, Institute of Contemporary Art Winnipeg, Canada 2010 The Beauty of Distance: Songs of Survival in a Precarious Age, The 17th Biennale of Sydney, Sydney, Australia, 2010 Putiputi: The Flower in Contemporary New Zealand Art, Hastings City Art Galllery, New Zealand


SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS 2013 - 2006 (Continued) 2009 The 6th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art, Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane, Australia 2009 Together Alone: Australian and New Zealand Fashion, National Gallery of Victoria, Australia 2009 Blue Planet, Christchurch Art Gallery, New Zealand 2009 Am I Scared, Boy (eh): collection works from then and now, Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, New Plymouth, New Zealand 2008 Dispelling the Myth: a look at changing attitudes towards death, Te Manawa Museum, Palmerston North, New Zealand 2008 Dateline: Contemporary Art from the Pacific, Govett-Brewster Gallery, New Plymouth, New Zealand 2008 Dateline: Contemporary Art from the Pacific, Galerie der Stadt Sindelfingen, Maichingen, Germany 2008 Dateline: Contemporary Art from the Pacific, Stadtgalerie Kiel, Germany 2007 Pacifica Styles, Cambridge University of Anthropology and Archaeology, Cambridge, England 2007 Dateline: Contemporary Art from the Pacific, Neuer Berliner Kunstverein, Berlin, Germany 2007 Of Deities and Mortals, Christchurch City Art Gallery, Christchurch, New Zealand 2007 News from Islands, Campelltown Arts Centre, Campbelltown, Australia SELECTED AWARDS, RESIDENCIES AND COMMISSIONS 2014 Artist in Residence, Gouyong, Korea 2013 Public art work commission for the Newmarket Railway Station, Auckland, New Zealand 2013 Artist in Residence, Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, New Plymouth, New Zealand 2010 Artist in Residence, BCA Gallery, Rarotonga, New Zealand 2009 There Goes the Moon, commission for TV series New Artland, New Zealand 2007 Artspace Billboard, Karangahape Road, Auckland, New Zealand 2006 International Studio Curatorial Program, three month residency as part of the James Wallace Art Awards Development Prize, Manhattan, New York 2005 Ikaria, Greece, two month residency to create permanent installation at The Art Cafe, Kampos 2005 Finalist, Castellón City Arts Council Arts Prize, Spain 2004 Punatapu Lodge, two month residency, Queenstown, New Zealand 2003 New Zealand Fashion Week, in collaboration with WORLD, Auckland 1997 Möet et Chandon Fellowship, two month residency, Avize, France COLLECTIONS National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, Australia Auckland City Art Gallery, Toi o Tamaki, Auckland, New Zealand Auckland University Collection, Auckland, New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, Wellington, New Zealand Dunedin Public Art Gallery, Dunedin, New Zealand The Dowse Art Museum, Lower Hutt, New Zealand Sky City Casino Penthouse, Auckland, New Zealand Govett–Brewster, New Plymouth, New Zealand Christchurch City Art Gallery, Christchurch, New Zealand James Wallace Arts Trust, Auckland, New Zealand Otago Museum, New Zealand


REUBEN PATERSON | THANKS DARKNESS MARTIN BROWNE CONTEMPORARY 15 HAMPDEN STREET PADDINGTON NSW 2021 TEL: 02 9331 7997 FAX: 02 9331 7050 info@martinbrownecontemporary.com www.martinbrownecontemporary.com GALLERY HOURS: TUESDAY - SUNDAY 10:30AM - 6PM

REUBEN PATERSON | THANKS DARKNESS | Online Catalogue  

Reuben Paterson | Thanks Darkness | 17 October - 10 November 2013 | Martin Browne Contemporary