Archives for the month of: April, 2016

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The last few weeks were pretty hectic with preparations for the exhbition opening. The whole affair was organised in a timeframe of only 3 weeks, as it had to fit in with the opening of the law firm that is in the same building. It was amazing how well organised the 14 exhibiting artists were. All of them are highly professional and it was a pleasure to be involved in putting the biographies, statements and the descriptions of the work together. We also managed to get flyers for the first three workshops ready in time.

It is not that easy for the Dedes to leave their friends behind, so I promised the ones that went and sat in the Gallery a new mobile phone. In the end I took four Dedes, but as Alien has his own antennaes he didn’t need to be bribed with a new device. Before we even left the house the others got into their new toys straight away and they haven’t looked up since. Because of this, Alien quickly got annoyed with his mates and in the end he wandered off to make friends with the goat my friend Carly has put in the exhibition. The goat looked at Alien but wasn’t the least bit interested in his advances. He was very well aware that he is king of the show and admired by all the visitors.

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If you are in Auckland, the show is in the brand new space of Studio 541, at 541 Mount Eden Road. The gallery is open from 11am to 4pm, Tuesday to Saturday.  Check out the space, it is truely amazing. We have three teaser workshops organised. If you are interested in how to non-destructively work in Photoshop with layers and masks, join me on the 14th of May from 9am to 3pm. I will be running the workshop, assisted by Carly van Winkel and it is a real steal at $80 for the day.

On the 4th of June we will have an intro to Photography course in which Carly will explain all the awkward technical terms so that you can use your camera on manual and create the most amazing shots. This time I will be assisting. For more info go to the website of Studio541

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harvey lotto
The Dedes are getting on with their lives as usual. They all have their own ways of dealing with the current situation Harvey for example is dreaming of the big lottery win and Pig and Professor are out on the turps.

pig prof brain in bottle

On Sunday they woke up and wondered what the white residue in the bottle might be. They looked, turned the bottle, looked again.  Both agreed it looked suspiciously like a pickled brain, but neither of them wanted to admit that maybe the alcohol was taking it’s toll.  Gee were they reliefed when Top Dog came in and asked what they were doing with his bottle. Everybody knows that Top Dog has drowned his grey matter in the substance a long time ago.

top dog claiming brain

Meanwhile L’Artiste is preparing for an exhibition he is taking part in. Unfortunately Sunny, the wannabe artist, has broken L’Artiste’s jigsaw just when he needed it the most. Sunny didn’t apologise, he just grinned like an idiot – I assume because he felt really guilty – and quickly scuffled off

sunny broken jigsaw

As Sunny doesen’t have the money to replace the jigsaw blade L’Artiste said he has to help him with his preparations for the exhibtions – to pay for it. Though the master is not very pleasant at the moment. When it comes to putting the finishing touches to the work he is always unsure about everything. He wants to discuss the finer detail with Sunny. But the assistant with  his overly happy disposition believes everything will be just fine. He simply can’t understand why L’Artiste painfully deliberates over every little detail. “Who cares!” he says.  “It is not your heart, that will be nailed to the wall”, says L’Artiste disappointedly and continues deliberating.

This might explain why L’Artiste is the more successful artist and Sunny still a wannabe, eh.

lartiste critique

Just in case you are interested, here are the four works L’Artiste is putting into the exhibition.

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Down the road from the fairytale gardens (2011)

Black and white photograph on 220gsm lustre paper, mounted and framed | Framed size 600mm by 440mm | Edition of 3 prints.

A walk down memory lane, this image is a homage to those who, for whatever reason, failed  to prosper in a seemingly nourishing environment. The dead tree is uncomfortably juxtaposed with the peaceful glade and the channel of light that symbolises hope. The image was taken in a nature park in my hometown in Germany.

 

enigma

Enigma (2014)

Composite photographic print mounted floating on layers of black paper. | Framed size 330mm x 330mm | Edition of 3 prints

A very personal description of a typical German baby boomer conundrum: the riddle of our parents’ generation’s inability to trust and communicate. It interweaves my mother’s Red Cross Helper’s badge with a well-used page of her cookbook. The swastika emblem on the rim of the badge painfully alludes to an undisclosed past negating the caring symbolism of the image. The red cross is placed on it’s side to look like an x in an official stamp, which loudly declares the key message of my parent’s generation: “Don’t ask!”

from a distance

From a distance (2016)

Mixed Media. | Dimensions 390mm x 390mm

Impossible and inconclusive ponderings on the refugee crisis in Europe from a distance. The white raft is approaching the rigid mainland and breaking its boundaries.

With this work I returned to my favorite symbol of ambiguity – the saltire (x). Depending on the viewpoint, it can mean “x marks the spot” like on a treasure map or it might mean “no entry”

absolutely for and totally againstt

Absolutely for or totally against it (2016)

Acrylic paint on wood | Size 295mm by 163mm

The work is a reminder of the possible and peaceful coexistence of conflicting opinions about the same issue. Concurrently, the thin separating line and parallel tracks stipulate the impossibility of converging these differing notions, even in the future.

 

L;Artiste working

The Dedes are in a strange state at the moment. We are currently preparing to move to the countryside and there is heaps to do on the house before this happens. The strange is, the Dedes came to life when we extended the house and created a big studio space. Now they seem to die, because we are about to leave. I am truly looking forward to new beginnings, though at the same time I still have trouble letting go of this perfect space we have created here. It has been my safe haven in recent years, when my outside world seemed to be collapsing around me. I don’t know when, if ever, I will be able to create something I am equally comfortable with. But before we move we have to get rid of a lot of junk. (This is exactly the reason why I created the Dedes in 2012 – I had to clear out the spare room and get rid of all the old newspapers). This time I have to get rid of a lot of building material :)

A friend of mine, who was one of my students years back, has created an amazing studio space in Mt Eden in Auckland and she has invited me to take part in a big opening exhibition at the end of the month. So L’Artiste is in a flurry to finish off half completed work. Sometimes he is totally lost in his studio. Can you find him in the picture below?

studio mess