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Thao Nguyen Phan: Dangerous Optimism Ocula Conversation Thao Nguyen Phan: Dangerous Optimism Tessa Moldan, Brussels

With Monsoon Melody on view at WIELS, Brussels, her largest solo exhibition to date, Thao Nguyen Phan discusses her transition to film to explore colonial legacies and ecological destruction in Vietnam.

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Frieze Los Angeles: Shows to See Ocula Report Frieze Los Angeles: Shows to See Tessa Moldan, Los Angeles

Los Angeles' art scene has a lot to offer during Frieze Los Angeles, with galleries, non-profits, and museums gearing up for the fair's second edition between 14 and 17 February 2020. In this Ocula Lowdown, Tessa Moldan lists a selection of the city's must-see shows.

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Jaki Irvine's Manifesto on Life at Kerlin Gallery, Dublin Ocula Insight Jaki Irvine's Manifesto on Life at Kerlin Gallery, Dublin Apoorva Rajagopal, Dublin

Ack Ro' , Jaki Irvine's reflection on the fragility of life at Kerlin Gallery, Dublin, is an 'ambitious, holistic installation' staged like a 'wild disarray of interconnected yet fragmented pieces'.

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Christchurch Art Guide

New Zealand

Previous Exhibitions

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Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Roundabout at Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
29 November–21 December 2019 Group Exhibition Roundabout Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
Contemporary art exhibition, Emily Hartley-Skudder, Lollygagger at Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
25 October–23 November 2019 Emily Hartley-Skudder Lollygagger Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
Contemporary art exhibition, Oliver Perkins, Pilgrim's Oyster at Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
27 September–19 October 2019 Oliver Perkins Pilgrim's Oyster Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
Contemporary art exhibition, Kristin Hollis, Skin at Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
27 August–21 September 2019 Kristin Hollis Skin Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
Contemporary art exhibition, Martin Poppelwell, the edge of the alphabet at Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
27 August–21 September 2019 Martin Poppelwell the edge of the alphabet Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
Contemporary art exhibition, Saskia Leek, Early Telepaths Later at Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
30 July–24 August 2019 Saskia Leek Early Telepaths Later Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
Contemporary art exhibition, Robert Hood, future sectional carbonised stomach compulsion earth pathology at Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
30 July–24 August 2019 Robert Hood future sectional carbonised stomach compulsion earth pathology Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Show, The Head and The Heart at Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch
27 June–27 July 2019 Group Show The Head and The Heart Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch

Galleries In Christchurch

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Institutions

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Ocula Magazine

Boyd Webb Ocula Conversation Boyd Webb Laura Thomson, Auckland

Boyd Webb was born in Christchurch, New Zealand in 1947 and attended the University of Canterbury School of Fine Arts (Ilam). He won a scholarship to study sculpture at the Royal College of Art, London in 1972 and continues to live and work in Brighton, England. Initially he worked as a sculptor, making life casts of people in fibreglass...

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Natasha Conland Ocula Conversation Natasha Conland Laura Thomson, Auckland

Natasha Conland is Curator, Contemporary Art at the Auckland Art Gallery, Auckland, New Zealand. She has curated numerous exhibitions including A Puppet A Pauper A Pirate A Poet A Pawn & A King: From the Naomi Milgrom Art Collection (2013); Made Active: The Chartwell Show (2012); the 4th Auckland Triennial,  Last Ride in a Hot Air...

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Martin Browne Ocula Conversation Martin Browne

Following a very early foray into diplomacy and trading futures, Martin Browne returned to the business of art and now some twenty-five plus years later he runs the very successful and well respected Sydney gallery, Martin Browne Contemporary.  In The Art Life’s inaugural list of the fifty most powerful people in the Australian art...

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Hou Hanru Ocula Conversation Hou Hanru

Born in 1963 in Guangzhou, China, Hou graduated from the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing in 1985 (BA) and 1988 (MA). Formally a critic and curator based in Paris, he was recently the Director of Exhibitions & Public Programmes and Chair of Exhibition Studies & Museology at the San Francisco Art Institute from 2006 to 2012. Hou is a...

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Vincent Ward Ocula Conversation Vincent Ward Anna Dickie

Vincent Ward is best known as an internationally acclaimed film director and screenwriter, earning both critical acclaim and festival attention for his often dark, but memorable films. Vigil ,  The Navigator: A Medieval Odyssey and Map of the Human Heart were officially selected for the Cannes Film Festival; and What Dreams May Come ,...

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Three Judy Millar Paintings Related Press Three Judy Millar Paintings 19 April 2018, EyeContact

'Gesture' and 'gestural' are vastly overused words in talking about abstract painting but remain unavoidable in talking about Judy Millar's work. As Kundera intimates above, perhaps gestures perform us, rather than the other way around, memes proliferating like living things. Perhaps art is merely a long war to determine who is in charge.

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Artist's New Year honour: 'We don’t value the arts highly enough' Related Press Artist's New Year honour: 'We don’t value the arts highly enough' 30 December 2017, Stuff

Julia Morison didn't need to give much thought to whether or not to accept her latest accolade. The Christchurch artist has been made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit in the New Year Honours, arguably the highest recognition of a 40-year career. 'Anything that promotes the arts is a really good thing,' she said. 'We have so much...

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The Irrepressible Judy Darragh Related Press The Irrepressible Judy Darragh 10 February 2017, EyeContact

Judy Darragh has been a fixture of the New Zealand art world since the Olympian heights of the 1980s. She was prominent in the establishing of Auckland's Teststrip in the early nineties, and the subject of Te Papa's first survey show of a living artist, Judy Darragh: So... You Made It? in 2004. The irregular aluminium foil planetoids of her...

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Paint as Fuel or Food Related Press Paint as Fuel or Food 11 January 2016, Eye Contact

Ilam-trained and now living back in his native China, Zhonghao Chen is an artist fascinated with painting as a process of consumption and indulgence, hence the heavily-loaded brushwork and the palette scrapings set aside and applied after the fact. Paint is analogous to fuel or food for the painter and the painting.

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Christchurch Art Gallery reopening will reunite city with art Related Press Christchurch Art Gallery reopening will reunite city with art 16 December 2015, The Press

Christchurch people are about to be reunited with an art collection hidden from sight for nearly five years. The reopening of the Christchurch Art Gallery on Saturday will mean the city's art collection will be on display once again. The collection has been in safe storage since the gallery closed after the February 2011 earthquakes....

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Extending the Gallery Space Related Press Extending the Gallery Space 24 November 2015, EyeContact

In directing interest towards formal and spatial relationships, Jenkinson curiously makes the subjects of these photographs entirely universal and detached, (paradoxically) from any specific time or place. Moreover, as large-scale vinyl prints, her photographs are seamlessly attached to the walls at a variety of heights and ostensibly randomly...

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Heavenly creatures populate Mark Braunias' Anti Groovy exhibition Related Press Heavenly creatures populate Mark Braunias' Anti Groovy exhibition 22 May 2015, Stuff

Four years ago New Zealand artist Mark Braunias spent a lot of time cycling over the Golden Gatge Bridge in San Francisco, contemplating other worlds. The result forms the basis of his exhibition Anti Groovy , a play on the phrase "anti gravity" he explains for which Braunias travelled to Christchurch and spent a week painting creatures...

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Savage cuts to Christchurch Art Gallery funding Related Press Savage cuts to Christchurch Art Gallery funding 23 March 2015, The Press

The Christchurch Art Gallery's fund for purchasing artworks will be cut by more than two thirds under wide-ranging budget cuts proposed for the arts. The cuts mean the gallery's art buying fund will fall from $250,000 a year to $80,000 a year, making it one of the most poorly funded art collections in the country. It has to trim 6 per cent...

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Resting upon the Avon River between the ocean and the Southern Alps, Christchurch is a relatively large city (the largest in New Zealand's South Island) with a small but diverse contemporary art scene that adapts and evolves, much like the city itself. Characterised by pockets of open green space amidst a mixture of modern and French neo-Gothic buildings, the city holds a distinct character.

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Since the Canterbury College School of Art's establishment in 1882, the Garden City has historically been one of the country's main centres of art. Home to the loose but influential long-running art association known as The Group, some of New Zealand's best-known avantgarde artists over the last century studied amidst the city's unique urban landscape.

Behind its imposing curved glass façade, Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū boasts a diverse collection of prominent historical and contemporary New Zealand artworks. Canterbury Society of Arts, established in 1880, continues to propel the city and region's artistic development, showcasing the latest talent at the Centre of Contemporary Art (CoCA). Smaller influential galleries such as the Jonathan Smart Gallery, The Physics Room, City Art Depot, and PG gallery192 strengthen the diversity of the city's art scene by providing a platform for many established and up-and-coming Canterbury artists.

Despite the disruption to this artistic legacy and Christchurch society at large caused by the 2011 earthquake, the art scene has continued to thrive. New life has been breathed into the city in the years following the natural disaster by a bustling array of street art; murals, sculpture, installations, and pop-up art spaces fill the gaps left by ruins and redevelopment. Drawn in by the abundance of blank spaces to work with, New Zealand and international artists have flocked to the city, turning it into a street art capital. The Christchurch Art Gallery (which served as an Emergency Operations Centre and Civil Defence headquarters) and CoCA both reopened five years after the earthquake. Most of the city's smaller galleries also reopened. Alongside the reopening of the City's established institutions a series of new spaces such as Art Box Gallery were established.

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