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Current Exhibitions - Obscure Gallery

The eye altering alters all

Obscure Galleries inaugural opening saw a good turn out from the local community as well as artists and buyers from far a field; and was a great opportunity to check out the new space and venue for arts in the Motueka/Tasman region.

The current show ‘The eye altering alters all’ brings together a fusion of painting, photography, jewellery, mixed media and the curious monsters of fabric artist Heather Owen.

Dominating the main walls are three large works by mixed media artist John Currin. The power of the works is instantly readable even as you approach the gallery from the outside. Rich intense colour emanates from the surfaces of the two main canvases. Their surfaces seem sullied by the elements, the images emerging through the textures of time. “My works are fashioned with the debris of our neglect” remarks Currin, “I take things that we consider unworthy or ugly, such as rust, mould or shattered glass, and fashion works of beauty from them”. Elements of the surreal, even the macabre, reside in the frame alongside the historical. Old trucks and buildings of our yesteryears convey feelings of our pioneering days.

This theme is also evident in Garry Currin’s ‘Untitled Western’ series. These intimate paintings capture in miniature the grandeur of the American Wild West. The paintings evoke the illusion of old photos and are described by Garry as “photographic impasses between reality and dream”. The surfaces are fluid with sharp focus on figures and foreground contrasted against blurred moody skies. They are a tribute to the American cowboy and the harsh land he inhabited.

The burlesque jewellery of Lizzy D completes the exhibition. Jewellery woven with old chain, beautifully embellished with cogs, and finished with antique beads and buttons. An old Victorian picture frame forms the pendant of one large piece, a cross pollination of contemporary design and the Victorian aesthetic.

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