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Art in the Dark


An illuminating new project is giving a fresh perspective on Christchurch’s world-renowned street art. Sustainable lighting business, Gen Green, and street art champions Watch This Space have joined forces with project managers Living Space and the help of a council grant to celebrate the city’s street art by darkness.

 

 

Compelled to provide the community a free and interesting reason to come into the city centre after dark Gen Green and Watch This Space successfully applied for a Christchurch City Council Enliven Places Project Fund and have also been supported by project management firm Living Space.

Gen Green co-founders Greg Dirkzwager and Brendan Stafford have supplied the lighting for the initiative and Watch This Space Urban Arts Trust’s Reuben Woods has helped select eleven artworks and artists to be featured.

Greg says, “We really want to be part of the effort to get people back into the city centre and help the businesses there while also creating something interesting for people to do after dark.”

Reuben, who did his PhD on the subject of Christchurch’s street art, is passionate about providing both the art and artists a platform to have their work discovered and accessed – and giving the public a new opportunity to engage with the form.

He says the art and initiative has taken on a parallel meaning as attention turns to support our communities through the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The art has a lot of meaning and to many people in Christchurch as it represents the city during its toughest times.

“Some of the works talk about rebuilding and the restoration of Christchurch, so it’s important for us to do something now – and that’s lighting it up.”

Brendan says the installation process, hindered slightly by some springtime rain, was well thought out to illuminate certain parts of the art works, while also protecting from potential damage. It also involved extensive co-ordination with building owners to obtain access.

The eleven artworks chosen can be viewed on a map at www.watchthisspace.org.nz/#map and includes favourites like Askew on Gloucester Street, Kevin Ledo’s Whero O Te Rangi Bailey at the Crowne Plaza, Rone at Cathedral Square, and Erika Pearce at Allen St.


 

Heads up! – Hair Art + Beauty


 Hair Art and Beauty has a new stylist. We caught up with Sharon Screen about a career that has taken her around the world.

 

With years of experience I find myself still absolutely passionate about all things ‘hairdressing’.

I’ve travelled the world, creating and showcasing fabulous hairstyles from London, to Italy, France, Japan and even on the catwalks of New York.

Having been an educator to top hairdressers around the world, I’m now loving being back on the salon floor with clients in a great environment as a member of the fabulous Hair Art and Beauty team.

Wether it’s cutting, styling or technical colouring that is required, I’ll enhance your look, create your point of difference and reflect your personality.

As a stylist with exceptional avant-guard cutting skills, technical expertise as a colourist and natural flair, I’ll create looks that are totally on-trend and suited to you.

I offer a very personalised and professional service.

When not in salon, you could well find me consulting clients on their gardens as a landscape architect (BLA Hons), or perhaps I might be helping couples shape their perfect wedding day…. doing all the flowers and venue stylings as I’m also a registered marriage celebrant.

Keeping active is always important, golfing, playing tennis or jumping on my bike for a quick fix and enjoying my family and friends helps make it all worthwhile.

When it comes to hair, my philosophy has always been ‘it’s more important what we leave behind than what we take off!’

Come and find me at Hair Art and Beauty on Wednesdays and Thursdays. I welcome new and existing clients.


 

A place of passion: Tait Gallery


Visit the beautiful alpine village of Hanmer Springs, park your car and take a stroll up Conical Hill Road to Tait Gallery. Take time to browse and chat to the gallery owner, William Taylor – his passion for the arts is infectious and his gallery is full of colour and vitality. You may even meet some of the artists in person during your stay!

 

ALETHEA TSE-ROCHE – ARROWTOWN RIVER

 

William enthusiastically describes Hanmer Springs as, “the cultural centre of the South Island”.

The village might be small, but it boasts two very fine art galleries, one of them being Tait Gallery, which opened three years ago and quickly became known as a sought-after destination. “We represent over 50 different artists and display a wide range of mediums at affordable prices,” William says.

He loves to promote established and emerging artists in the space and it’s not just for the adults; there’s also a children’s section for those between 8-15 years old.

The gallery also has a varied selection of exquisite glassware, sculptures, pottery, wood turning, ceramics and jewellery.

This gorgeous place of passion is just another addition to the must-sees of Hanmer Springs which make it a hotspot of the South Island.

Tait Gallery is located at 34 Conical Hill Road and open Thursday to Tuesday 10am to 4pm. For more information, phone 027 432 5914 or email info@taitgallery.co.nz.


 

New directions: Art Metro


Painting may have been one of the hobbies New Zealanders took up over the course of the lockdown. YouTube tutorials may have sufficed then, but now it’s time to increase those skills further.

 

 

Enter Art Metro, a creative hub that has produced hundreds of happy students.

Metropol caught up with owner Simon Walmisley about the art school and the exciting opportunities arising for him.

“I believe that what we do here at Art Metro is far more than running a business,” Simon says.

“It’s a community service for people from all over the city, a social experience in a studio space where more than 300 students can enjoy each other’s company.”

Taking that community service as a springboard, Simon has decided to branch out into politics this year, standing under the New Conservative Party banner for the Ilam electorate.

“New Conservative’s strong focus on families and communities really appeals to me and I am excited to represent them as a candidate. I am sure campaigning will be just as challenging and rewarding as I have found being a business owner is,” Simon says.

“As I have with Art Metro, I will make the most of the opportunities that arise.”


 

A hop, skip and jump away


Less than half an hour drive away from Christchurch is the lovely river town of Kaiapoi. The location has a real water theme around its most popular activities. We look at all of the reasons you should check out this little town that’s only a hop, skip, and a jump away.

 

 

I’M LIKE A BIRD: If you’re a thrill seeker that prefers to be strapped into a seat instead of by your feet; Alpine Jet Thrills is the perfect activity for you. Soar down the Waimakariri River with a smile and the wind on your face.

DIVE ON IN: The Kaiapoi Aquatic Centre is open year-round, making it a great family friendly activity. The learners’ pool even features a waterfall into the toddlers’ pool.

PERCH UP: At Port & Eagle Brewpub you can enjoy great food, brews and company on the banks of the Kaiapoi River. The variety in the drinks list, not to mention their own Eagle Brewery tap beers, are reason enough to check this place out.

ART ON THE QUAY: Kaiapoi’s premium artspace showcases a new exhibition every six weeks from mostly local Waimakariri artists. So, if you’re into art, photography, ceramics, photography or anything in between; then this ever changing art space is for you.


 

From Marlborough to Mauritius: Windsor Gallery


Outstanding artworks by Anneke Bester and Rhonye McIlroy are showcased in the 18 May – 13 June exhibition at Windsor Gallery.

 

 

A follower of the neo-renaissance movement, Anneke has been painting and sculpting since she was 16 years old.

She has sculpted commercial commissions for hotel projects in South Africa, Mauritius and Dubai (including sculpting eight bronze life-size falcons for the Dubai Mall), and has also sculpted for the Chronicles of Narnia movie. Her exhibition is titled Sister Water.

Rhonye McIlroy’s background was originally fashion based. Her love for fashion, especially the top hat, has become her trademark in most of her paintings since 2011, which detailed many aspects of early New Zealand colonial history.

Current work explores Rhonye’s ancestors John and Elizabeth Guard, pioneers of New Zealand’s shore-based whaling industry in the Marlborough Sounds.

Rhonye’s exhibition is titled Stone to Flesh.

Find Windsor Gallery at 386 St Asaph Street, phone 03 366 0724. Follow Windsor Gallery on Facebook and windsorgallerynz on Instagram.


 

Framed Treasures


“If you have something you want framed, no matter what it is, bring it to me and I will turn it into a stunning wall feature.”

 

John McCann of Artworks Gallery does mean he can frame literally anything.

After all, he has framed items as unusual as a large wedding dress with a long train and a Māori piu piu (flax skirt), to nails and fastenings from the demolished Godley House on Banks Peninsula.

“Framing sports memorabilia, certificates, embroidery, precious old documents or garments and beautiful artworks means every day of my job is different. That and seeing how happy people are with their finished work, makes what I do really exciting and satisfying.”

The walls of John’s gallery are lined with examples of his work, while scores of frame samples draw the eye with their potential for creating the perfect environment for a treasured object.

“We source quality frames from Indonesia and Malaysia, as well as exquisite frames from Italy and Spain. I will soon be one of only a handful of framers who stock the Bellini range of handmade, hand-gilded frames from Italy.”

John says there is a frame for every taste and budget.

“My team and I see ourselves as consultants – we help to determine the final choice of frame and mat boards after discussion with the customer. Each item requires its own unique presentation depending on its subject matter, style, age and where it will be placed.”

All framing is done on site at the Main North Road gallery. Phone 03 352 7594 for your next framing project.


 

Living Art


Formerly at Pareora Street, Riccarton, Bryce Gallery has now relocated out to the idyllic serenity of the countryside and on Saturday 1 February, artists Min Kim and Jamie Stewart welcomed around 200 friends and associates to the reopening of Bryce Gallery at 84 Vincenza Drive, Ohoka.

 

Their vision for the gallery is to develop the four acres of land into a sculpture garden and the 422 square metre home into an artistic paradise for art lovers.

Already Min and Jamie have turned the concept of what we think of as a working gallery on its head, for there is no one standalone room in which to view the Bryce collection; instead, artworks grace each and every room, as well as the garden and surrounding parklands.

It is an astounding concept, but also a glorious one. “I’ve always felt that in connecting with nature, we are safe,” Min says.

“Listening to the wind in the trees here – it’s so magical.”

Min’s love of meeting new people and reconnecting with old friends has prompted the opening of an Air B&B in March; it’s a heavenly way for guests to experience that magic for themselves and revel in the beauty that’s truly all around them.

“Bryce Gallery’s relocation is very much about my giving back to the artistic society, because my clients have fed my soul,” Min says.

“I want to know who has bought my art and why – what it means to them.”

Find Bryce Gallery at 84 Vincenza Drive, Ohoka.


 

Art & Soul


When it comes to decorating, there’s nothing quite like creating a space with ‘art and soul’. A gallery wall might just be the state of play if you want to do just that. We’ve got some hot tips for creating a cool wall.

 

 

GET CLEVER WITH COLOUR
Colour plays a key role in almost every aspect of design. So when taking your gallery wall to the next level, think colour… it may just be the link that ties all your elements together.

THINK THEMATICALLY
Displays that have a central concept always look a bit tighter and more put together than those that don’t. Creating an overall theme will help you strike just the right note.

CREATIVE CONSISTENCY
There are endless variations available when it comes to creating a gallery wall, from highly structured and uniform to varied and eclectic.

Keeping it cohesive doesn’t have to mean staid and uniform; mixing different shapes, sizes and hues is a great way to create a polished design, provided you pay mind to balance and visual weight.


 

Gauguin in Aotearoa


An exhibition showcasing the works of artists Gabriel Heimler and Anna Proc is soon to open at McAtamney Gallery in Geraldine.

 

 

Titled Gauguin in Aotearoa, the exhibition features a series of paintings inspired by a time when French post-impressionist artist, Paul Gauguin had a ten day stopover in Auckland in 1895, en route to Tahiti.

Gauguin visited the Auckland Museum and, discovering the then newly-opened Māori Art wing, immersed himself in studying and making sketches of the artworks on display.

“Gauguin was a world-citizen; he was half-Peruvian and half-French,” Proc explains.

“He felt himself to be already cosmopolitan and, although he lived in France for some years, he didn’t feel at home there.

Gauguin was searching for a newness, for diversity… he dreamt to find an optimal inspirational place and Tahiti seemed an idyllic destination for his creativity.”

Proc says that, like Gauguin, she and Heimler are from Europe and have been searching for a place that is new and diverse yet also rooted in its history.

“Our inspiration is to ask ourselves what would Gauguin paint if he were here in New Zealand now?

Our work also asks can we choose another country and represent it; interpret this new land – our fascination with Māori culture and that underlying female presence?

Gauguin’s paintings of women are rather mysterious; our big point of difference is that certainly, we want to celebrate and show the beauty and importance of women, but integral to our work is to make them contemporary – of today’s world.”

Heimler and Proc have been painting collaboratively for 10 years.

They work in tandem, from large wall murals through to diptychs. Gauguin in Aotearoa poses many questions, such as why alongside the Polynesian women featured in the series, there are also blue-eyed blondes, sports cars and, somewhat surreally, Heimler, Proc and Gauguin chatting in a doorway!

“In sum, our art is a reflection of our quest to gain a deeper understanding of our single and united selves,” Proc says, “Our work is not didactic; rather, we raise questions. Our process is as much one of exploration as of discovery.”

Find McAtamney Gallery and Design Store at 40a Talbot Street, Geraldine. Phone 027 305 3000 or email carolyn@mcatamneygallery.co.nz.