Events worth noting around the country
Words: Ann Warnock
Hotere + Culbert: Dark Matter
12 October to 16 March, Dunedin Public Art Gallery
The 10-year collaborative relationship between artistic heavyweights Ralph Hotere and Bill Culbert comes under the spotlight in a major survey showcasing a series of sculptural installations produced by the union. It includes their first and rarely exhibited work Untitled 1989. Both Hotere, who died in February this year, and Culbert, currently our official representative at the 2013 Venice Biennale, have made an indelible footprint on Aotearoa’s contemporary artistic landscape.
Phone (03) 474 3240
MOAMOA Seung Yul Oh: Ten Years
23 November to 20 April, Dunedin Public Art Gallery
A forest of yellow inflatable columns, oversized bowls of noodles suspended from the ceiling and a giant polished mouse are part of the medley of works in MOAMOA, a review of recent and new work by New Zealand-Korean artist Seung Yul Oh. The artist, who divides his time between Auckland and Seoul and was recently named by The Guardian newspaper as “one of the rising stars of the Asian art market”, has many artistic skills including sculpture, painting, video, performance and more recently his trademark inflatable installations. The word “moamoa” is Korean for “gather gather” or “gather together”.
Phone (03) 474 3240, dunedin.art.museum
To 23 March, Canterbury Museum, Christchurch
The punch and poignancy of urban street art come under the spotlight in a large-scale show which festoons the museum walls and includes works by leading British-based graffiti artist Banksy, Belgian artist ROA, Kiwi artist Askew One and Christchurch-based Wongi Wilson. With vacant spaces spread across the post-earthquake city, RISEcelebrates the resonance of urban art in the environment.
Phone (03) 366 5000, canterburymuseum.com
Matatoki – Contemporary Maori Carving
To 16 March, Rotorua Museum Te Whare Taonga o Te Arawa
The spotlight falls on 11 of Aotearoa’s contemporary Maori carvers, much of whose work is purchased by international buyers and rarely seen in its homeland. The exhibition, including works by Fayne Robinson, Simon Lardelli, Ian-Wayne Grant, Iwi Le Comte, Todd Couper and Lewis Gardiner, traverses the mediums of stone, pounamu, wood and cast aluminium and themes of nga tikanga tuku iho – Maori concepts from the past, cross-cultural collaboration and European philosophy. All 11 artists share the connection of having studied in Rotorua.
Phone (07) 350 1814, rotoruamuseum.co.nz
To 6 April, PATAKA Art + Museum, Porirua City
Did you know that the Chinese eat only one bar of chocolate for every 1000 consumed by the British, that chemicals found in chocolate can protect you from developing cancer and heart disease, provide a mild aphrodisiac and a natural anti-depressant and that most women prefer chocolates to flowers on Valentine’s Day? From the rainforests of Central America and the cacao plantations of West Africa to PATAKA’s own neighbourhood (Whittaker’s chocolate factory in Porirua), Chocolate probes the history and development of the “food of the gods”.
Phone (04) 237 1511, pataka.org.nz
New Zealand Festival
21 February to 16 March, Wellington
The capital city rolls out its biennial festival of the arts, delivering 300 events over 24 days that see massive international spectacles as well as intimate artistic moments. The line-up kicks off with Big Bang when 200 young Kiwi drummers, 300 singers from community choirs across the country, Strike Percussion and Kiwi band Kora join forces on stage to spearhead a festival launch party in Wellington’s Civic Square.
Phone (04) 473 0149, festival.co.nz
Huakina He taonga mai i Te Papa – Unpacked Treasures from Te Papa
To 12 March, Whangarei Art Museum Te Manawa Toi
A brand-new project sees selected works from the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa’s national art collection given rotational display on a dedicated Te Papa Wall at Whangarei Art Museum every three months.
The inaugural work to be shared is The Blowing up of the Boyd by Louis John Steele and Kennett Watkins (1889) which captures an historic Northland event on Whangaroa Harbour in 1809.
Phone (09) 430 4240, whangareiartmuseum.co.nz
Water=Life: a Tale of Two Rivers; Life and change in two South Canterbury Rivers
To 4 May, South Canterbury Museum, Timaru
The impact of water on the landscape and the population is centre stage as the spotlight falls on the stories of two of South Canterbury’s waterways: the Orari River and Saltwater Creek. Water=Life explores the shapes, life forms and habitats of the two watercourses and chronicles their complex relationships with humans.
Phone (03) 687 7212, timaru.govt.nz/museum
To 13 April, The Suter Art Gallery Te Aratoi o Whakatu, Nelson
The essence of a classic Kiwi summer – searing heat, dreamy siestas, sea, sky, sun and a stress-free lifestyle – is encapsulated in a series of 20 works drawn from The Suter Collection with a riotous colour palette of golden yellow, deep green and sunburn pink. The vivacious line-up includes works by big-name artists Jane Evans, Gretchen Albrecht and Paul Radford.
Phone (03) 548 4699, thesuter.org.nz
Reuben Paterson: The Golden Bearing
To 27 July, Pukekura Park, New Plymouth
A life-sized, gold-glittered, hand-sculpted tree set in a public park is artist Reuben Paterson’s catalyst for questioning ideas about artificiality, reality, the natural environment and diverse cultural relationships with land and flora. Known for his paintings in glitter and diamond dust, Paterson’s new four-metre-high installation is his largest sculpture to date.
Phone (06) 759 6060, govettbrewster.com
20 March to 12 April, Maidment Theatre, Auckland
Written by Kiwi playwright Briar Grace-Smith and billed as “a thrilling new work melding history and myth to create a vibrant, visceral and courageous fictional drama”, Paniora! focuses on the descendants of Spanish whaler Manuel Jos de Frutos Huerta who emigrated to Aotearoa in 1835, married five Ngati Porou women simultaneously and laid the foundations for what remains an impassioned Spanish-Maori iwi from the East Coast. The stellar cast includes Miriama Smith, Calvin Tuteao and the Okareka Dance Company’s Taiaroa Royal.
Phone (09) 309 0390, atc.co.nz
Wanaka Agricultural & Pastoral Show
7 & 8 March, Wanaka Showgrounds
Hands down the country’s most picturesque A&P show: lakefront showgrounds, quintessential Central Otago hinterland and a traditional event rolling out equestrian and livestock competitions, home industries, wool classing and 350 trade stalls. Now one of the largest shows of its kind in the country and attracting 25,000 punters, it began life as the Upper Clutha A&P Show in 1895 and was first staged in its Wanaka setting in 1933. Phone
(03) 443 9559, wanakashow.co.nz
Cambridge Autumn Festival
12 to 16 March, Cambridge
The Waikato town’s annual celebration finishes with a carnival day of dance, street theatre, music and an open-air art market. Included are show classics from Opera Brava, Kiwi jazz and soul singer Whirimako Black, a Scottish ceilidh and screenings of Her Majesty, a documentary covering the Queen’s visit in the late 1950s.
Phone (07) 823 4397, cambridgeautumnfestival.co.nz
Burster Flipper Wobbler Dripper Spinner Stacker Shaker Maker
To 28 September, ArtBox CPIT – corner Madras & St Asaph Streets, Christchurch
Morphing pencil sculptures, stretchy paint skins, gravity-defying stacks and videos of exploding paint balloons are amongst the quirky works in a show which seeks to explore the shape-shifting, experimental and seriously playful mission of making art. Artists including Rebecca Baumann, Mark Braunias, Jill Kennedy, Judy Darragh and Miranda Parkes demonstrate the excitement of transforming ordinary artefacts in unexpected ways. Phone
(03) 941 7300, christchurchartgallery.org.nz
Ongoing, Park Terrace, east of Hagley Park, Christchurch
Street lamps from Belgrade in Serbia, Kurashiki in Japan, Sydney, Adelaide and Dusseldorf have been installed on Park Terrace in the first stage of an art installation by German artist Mischa Kuball which focuses on the act of giving and the positive symbolism of light. Over the next three years a total of 21 street lights, each gifted by a different country, will be added to the installation in a gesture of global solidarity as Christchurch recovers and rebuilds post-quake.
Other Desert Cities
19 April to 17 May, Circa Theatre, Wellington
Plot: In the sun-drenched comfort of California, Lyman Wyeth and his wife Polly have it all but the warm desert breeze turns cool when their daughter Brooke announces she’s written a tell-all memoir about a painful chapter in the family’s history. Love, perception and reality collide as the Wyeth clan learns that secrets cannot stay buried forever. Written by American playwright and Pulitzer Prize-finalist Jon Robin Baitz, the play has been a smash hit in New York where it premièred in 2011. It’s described as smart, sassy, high drama and with dazzling repartee.
Phone (04) 801 7992, circa.co.nz
17 to 26 April, St James Theatre, Wellington, then touring eight centres
A magical, masterful production designed by the late stage and costume designer Kristian Fredrikson. Merging ballet, comedy, mystery and romance, Coppelia delivers a medley of classic ballet from exhilarating character dances to a grand romantic pas de deux. Kiwi ballet legend Sir Jon Trimmer dances the role of Dr Coppelius, a part he first performed for the Royal New Zealand Ballet 50 years ago.
Huhtamaki New Zealand Barista Championship
21 to 23 March, Shed 6, Wellington
Four espressos, four cappuccinos and the creation of four visionary signature drinks, all executed to exacting technical standards in a 15-minute performance set to music. That’s the mind-boggling brief for Aotearoa’s tip-top baristas as they battle over their brews to secure New Zealand’s spot in the world championships to be staged in Italy in June. It is coffee lovers’ paradise as the action unfolds, the water steams, the beans emit their magic and the judges sip and sniff. The World Barista Championships are staged across 50 countries.
2014 iD Dunedin Fashion Week XV
30 March to 6 April
New Zealand’s underground fashion capital is in dazzle mode as it celebrates the 15th anniversary of iD, an event showcasing established international and Kiwi brands as well as local cutting-edge talent. Staged in a variety of heritage settings, the week-long event has cemented its place on the global fashion calendar.
Whangarei Heads Arts Trail
19 & 20 April
More than 30 Northland artists showcase their works with open-home studios, shared exhibitions and a programme of art events. Brochures with maps guide visitors along the trail which includes visits to the region’s best-known painters, potters, printmakers, jewellers, glass artists and furniture makers.