Dunedin School of Art Lunchtime Research Seminars Term 1, 2021
THURS 6 MAY, 12.00 – 1.00 PM, P152, DUNEDIN SCHOOL OF ART, RIEGO STREET, DUNEDIN
Peripatetic: in which the artist scrambles, scrapes and scratches, drifts, lurches, and rambles, in an attempt to make sense of both his practice and the world in which we exist, and how one feeds the other.
In this seminar Simon will discuss his developing practice since completing his MFA in 2020. Focusing on work developed as part of his ongoing participation in the Handshake Project, this may be seen as fragmentary, discursive, and somewhat discontinuous. Yet for all this meandering and drifting, it is hoped a certain cohesion may come to light and may in fact define the model for an ongoing practice.
Simon Swale is a Senior Lecturer at the School of Design, Otago Polytechnic. Teaching on the Fashion program, Simon has published widely on fashion design and the fashion system. Simon completed a Master of Fine Art at the Dunedin School of Art in 2020 with a focus on contemporary jewellery. He won the Jewellery category at the 2020 NZ Student Craft Design Awards and was an International Graduate Show prize winner at Galerie Marzee in the Netherlands. Simon is currently a participant of the Handshake Project mentorship program for emerging NZ jewellers and is mentored by Berlin based German artist Gabi Schillig.
THURS 13 MAY, 12.00 – 1.00 PM, P152, DUNEDIN SCHOOL OF ART, RIEGO STREET, DUNEDIN
Historical and contemporary use of Māori visual art in the transmission of Māori legal knowledge
The description of Indigenous Peoples as having an ‘oral culture’ is simplistic, often used as shorthand to suggest that oral cultures are non-literate and therefore more primitive. That implication undervalues Indigenous peoples’ visual culture of documenting, recording, and creating social, legal, and political information through mark making and encoded objects. Where a culture uses its artistic system to create objects whose primary purpose is to communicate information across time and place, those objects can be said to be “encoded objects”. The form, shape, materiality, surface design and construction of the object can all contribute to the meaning it holds, as can the nature and status of its maker and the time and place of its making.
When thinking about the documentation of indigenous law and how indigenous law is communicated and taught, it seems obvious that objects and visual markings would be used for that purpose just as objects (such as law books) and visual markings (such as writing) is used to communicate state law. My thesis explores the legal literacy of Māori visual art and asks whether Māori law is documented in visual art works such as pou, ta moko and raranga.
Metiria Turei - Āti Haunui a Pāpārangi, Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairarapa, Rangitane.
Metiria Stanton Turei lives in Dunedin, Aotearoa. Metiria built a career as a social activist, lawyer and member of the New Zealand Parliament over 20 years before moving to develop her art practice. Her art work focuses on Indigenous Futurism, Māori self determination in the present and the future and is primarily in performative textiles, activated on the body and presented in film and photographs. She has a law degree from the University of Auckland and a BVA Honours from the Dunedin School of Art. She works for the University of Otago in the Faculty of Law.
THURS 20 MAY, 12.00 – 1.00 PM, P152, DUNEDIN SCHOOL OF ART, RIEGO STREET, DUNEDIN
Tell them I said …
Taarati Taiaroa (Ngāti Tūwharetoa, Ngāti Apa, Te Āti Awa, Ngāti Kotimana) is an independent cultural worker whose work over the past 10 years has focused on the ethics of curatorial, artist-initiated, community based and collaborative practice.
As a participant in the Emerging Curators Programme (2015-16) she articulated a manifesto for her “conversational research” approach to working with others that is process driven and resists pre-determined outcomes. In this seminar she will discuss “conversational research” as enacted in artistic collaborations and curatorial projects. In doing so, she will reflect on the process that led her to understand and articulate her own ethics and the impact of this on decision making within her practice, and ultimately what she has been working on as the Blue Oyster Summer Resident.
The title of this seminar references the 2016 collection of essays by Martin Herbert, Tell Them I Said No, in which he considers various artists’ withdrawal from the art world or their open antagonisms to its machinations.
A graduate of the University of Auckland, Taarati Taiaroa holds Masters degrees in both Fine Arts and Museums and Cultural Heritage. As a co-director of RM, an artist-run-space in central Auckland, she contributed to the facilitation, production and coordination of over 50 exhibitions and events. In 2019 she co-convened the ST PAUL St Curatorial Symposium, It's as if we were made for each other; was a guest faculty member on the ICI for the Curatorial Intensive Auckland at Artspace and was Artist-in-residence at the Centre of Action Research and Evaluation at Massey University, Palmerston North.
In 2020 she was Assistant Curator, Māori Art on the exhibition Toi Tū Toi Ora: Contemporary Māori Art at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki. In this role, Taarati was able to put to use her MA thesis which sought to write a history of Maori art exhibitions (1958-2013). It focused on the group exhibition as a formative form in the reception, kaupapa and strengthening of a contemporary Māori art voice. She was supported to complete this thesis by the Marsden Funded Toi te Mana project, lead by Dr. Deidre Brown, Dr, Ngarino Ellis and the late Prof. Jonathan Mane Wheoki. Since 2013 she has been sharing her research through symposium papers, exhibitions, public programmes, and publications. Recent written contributions can be found in Crafting Aotearoa (2019) and the latest edition of Toi o Tāmaki’s magazine Art Toi (Dec 2020).
FRIDAY 21 MAY, 12.00 – 1.00 PM, P152, DUNEDIN SCHOOL OF ART, RIEGO STREET, DUNEDIN
Professor Robert Jahnke (Ngai Taharora, Te Whanau a Iritekura, Te Whanau a Rakairo o Ngati Porou) is an artist, writer and curator working principally as a sculptor, although trained as a designer and animator. His work focuses on the dynamics of inter-cultural exchange and the politics of identity. Jahnke primarily teaches into the MVA and PhD (FA) programmes out of Palmerston North.
THURS 27 MAY, 12.00 – 1.00 PM, P152, DUNEDIN SCHOOL OF ART, RIEGO STREET, DUNEDIN
East meets West down South
Kim will be discussing her work in terms of her mixed-race whakapapa (NZ Chinese/Cuban/Pākehā from Southland). Working primarily in printmaking and painting she explores aspects of her ancestry through early Chinese design forms and motifs, faux narrative and appropriation. Also, for the 10th anniversary of the Ōtautahi earthquakes, she will be sharing some post-quake creative community building initiatives from New Brighton and the eastern suburbs.
Kim Lowe is an artist, printmaker and educator based in Ōtautahi Christchurch and originally from Waihopai Southland. She completed a BFA (Printmaking) from Dunedin School of Art in 1996; an MFA in Printmaking from the University of Canterbury in 2009; and was the Olivia Spencer Bower Award recipient 2019. She has been involved in many post-quake projects over the past 10 years including Shared Lines: Sendai-Christchurch Art Exchange; TEZA New Brighton; Toi Te Karoro and Te Kura Tawhito. She currently lectures in Art and Design at Ara Institute of Canterbury Ltd.
THURS 3 JUNE, 12.00 – 1.00 PM, P152, DUNEDIN SCHOOL OF ART, RIEGO STREET, DUNEDIN
Brett Graham’s Tai Moana Tai Tangata exhibition at Govett-Brewster and contemporary Taoonga.
Māori curator, art historian and researcher, Anna-Marie White (Te Ātiawa) outlines the development and presentation of the exhibition ‘Tai Moana Tai Tangata’ by Brett Graham (Tainui, Ngāti Koroki Kahukura) at the Govett Brewster Art Gallery as both an outcome of kaupapa Māori research practice and exercise in Maori curatorship.
‘Tai Moana Tai Tangata’ evolved from White’s doctoral research, which investigated Brett Graham’s work within the context of debates about the definition of contemporary Māori art. Reviving the arguments of Hirini Moko Mead (1984) and in reference to Paul Tapsell’s 1998 definition of taonga, White’s 2020 doctoral thesis, ‘Contemporary Taonga: The Art Works of Brett Graham’, emphasised the essential role played by Māori in the reception and performance of contemporary Māori art as taonga.
Leading from these findings, and as an extension of kaupapa Māori research practice, White invited Graham to develop an exhibition at the Govett Brewster Art Gallery based on the historic relationship between their respective iwi. The resulting exhibition created an opportunity for Taranaki and Tainui Māori to engage and restate the principles of their political pact, Te Kiwai o te Kete, forged during the New Zealand Land Wars, in the present. This meeting activated the art works as taonga with the exhibition going on to directly serve the needs of Taranaki Māori while resonating with a broad spectrum of audiences in spite of the myriad challenges issued by the exhibition.
An introduction to this installation and key art works outlines these challenges concluding with a personal reflection on this transformative experience from the perspective of the curator.
Dr Anna-Marie White (Te Ātiawa) has held a number of curatorial positions across museums and art galleries in Aotearoa. Key exhibition projects include Pākehā Now! (2007), The Maui Dynasty (2008) and Kaihono Ahua: Vision Mixer (2013) with recently published essays on Jonathan Mane-Wheoki and George Hubbard reflecting on key movements of contemporary Māori art history of the 1990s.
THURS 10 JUNE, 12.00 – 1.00 PM, P152, DUNEDIN SCHOOL OF ART, RIEGO STREET, DUNEDIN
Mise en Abyme: Mirrors in Art, Mirrors in Theory
From the time of the pharaohs up to the present, graphically, materially, or metaphorically, mirrors contribute to countless works of art. Their invention 8000 years ago (of polished obsidian) captured the reflectivity of a still pond and turned it into a transferrable spectacle. The mirror was humanity’s first virtual reality tool. Over the millennia, though initially only for the very wealthy, these flexible forms of optical reflectivity have imbricated themselves into our daily human experience.
On the one hand the mirror seems to offer a straightforward proposition: WYSIWYG. But while the mirror may never lie, it invariably deflects. A mirror is the one object that, without debate, we all experience differently; when two or more people look at this object at the same time, they can never see exactly the same thing in it. In this way the mirror offers us a spontaneous view of our phenomenological predicament. Certainly, it is the deceptive potentials in the reflection of light and space that make mirrors so valuable to magicians and tricksters. Arguably for visual artists, it is through their very ability to distort that mirrors reveal most valuably. This seminar will explore the mirror as a material and as a conceptual apparatus in historical and contemporary art, while considering its theoretical implications through the lenses of philosophy and critical theory.
David Green is a video installation artist with a background in film production and visual effects. His artworks often appropriate and re-contextualise moving images produced by both professionals and amateurs in order to reveal embedded social and cultural themes (iconological meanings). He is currently teaching part-time at the Dunedin School of Art while working on a PhD with a creative component in the department of Media, Film, and Communication at Otago University. His written thesis conducts an interdisciplinary dialogue between ideas of film spectatorship, video art, and embodied cognition. This research provides a framework for his practice: experimental gallery-based and site-specific art installations that deploy moving-images.
THURS 17 JUNE, 12.00 – 1.00 PM, P152, DUNEDIN SCHOOL OF ART, RIEGO STREET, DUNEDIN
Working across video, installation and performance, my practice is often concerned with systems of communication and the social scenarios they give rise to. A body of work will often begin with fact but end as fiction, for example, an interest in a particular situation (eg, a designer, a typeface or a site) may spark the initial idea, but the idiosyncratic process of making and remaking the work sees the real become inseparable from the imagined.
My talk for the DSA students will give an overview of some recent projects as well as taking a look back at some of the work I made during art school and my involvement with Newcall Gallery – an artist run space, studio collective and occasional publishing imprint that ran 2008–2010.
Sonya Lacey is the current Dunedin Public Art Gallery artist in residence. Her exhibition Weekend is nominated for the Walters Prize and is currently showing at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki. She has exhibited throughout New Zealand at galleries including Artspace, Govett Brewster Art Gallery, The Dowse Art Museum and Te Tuhi Centre for the Arts. Her video By Sea has been extensively screened internationally including at the London International Film Festival and her work was recently included in the Singapore Festival of Moving Image: State of Motion 2020. She currently sits on the board for Circuit Artist Film and Video Aotearoa.
Published on 4 May 2021
Orderdate: 4 May 2021
Expiry: 20 Jun 2021