Medium: Photography, clay, wood
It has been a joy and a privilege to work in art education at Secondary School level in Greymouth for the past two decades. My own art qualifications come from a variety of places: NMIT, Otago School of Fine Arts (DFA), Otago University (BA), Canterbury College of Education (Sec Art), Auckland University of Technology (Dp Gr, MA).
The reason I make art is for the love of the process of creating, reworking and developing ideas. I go through phases of enjoying different approaches to making art but the creative process, for me, remains centered on the joy of learning. The inspiration for my art comes from the way art allows me to respond to the world around me in a deeply personal way.
My Intention was to make a photographic image that expressed the gravity of the impact of Covid-19 on the worldwide community. My motivation for making this artwork was to express the intangible feelings of fear, faith, and the fragility of our existence in times of communal global suffering.
I used this medium because of the dramatic nature chiaroscuro can create in photography of my sculptures. It sets a solemn mood that focuses the viewer’s attention on the sculptures. I used natural materials to sculpt the three faces, one looking left, one looking straight ahead and one looking right, that capture the fall of fleeting light, in a time of darkness. Using natural materials have a symbolic meaning to me and remind me of the temporal aspects of human existence.
The idea of monuments in these artworks was to symbolize a person’s life, whakapapa, beliefs, trials and tragedies. Last but not least I wanted this artwork to act as a reminder of the value and fragility of life.
The impact of covid-19 on my art making has been both fascinating and profond. The art making process allowed me to express the intangible feelings of fear, faith and the fragility of our existence in times of communal world-wide suffering. Art allowed me to show unseen feelings, impressions and ideas that come from my responses to the environment and experiences around me. During the lockdown I was able to slow down and focus on family and my bubble in a way that created such a strong sense of belonging and a desire to look after each other. It also allowed a time of deep reflection and creativity that was unlike any other time I have experienced.