MY CHOICE: Airini Beautrais / December 2020
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MY CHOICE: Airini Beautrais / December 2020

Airini Beautrais. Photograph by Tracy Grant

Each month a member of our community is invited to browse our online collection and select six of their favourite artworks. Each ‘My Choice’ selection, together with personal responses to the works, will be available to view on the Sarjeant Gallery website for one month at a time. The December 2020 My Choice has been selected by Airini Beautrais and is available to view until 31 December 2020.

Airini Beautrais is a teacher and writer who has lived in Whanganui most of her life. She is the author of four poetry collections, most recently Flow: Whanganui River Poems (Victoria University Press 2017) and a book of short stories, Bug Week (Victoria University Press 2020). She teaches health science at Whanganui UCOL and is doing a contract at the Whanganui Regional Museum working with communications.



My Choice December 2020: Airini Beautrais, teacher and writer.

Click on an image to see further details about the work and artist, and view a large version.

Mary Macpherson – ‘Hammock by the Whanganui River’

“I’m drawn to the warm colours in this work and the lazy imagery it depicts. Mary has a gift for making the ordinary appear extraordinary.”

Seraphine Pick – ‘Untitled’

“There is so much going on in this print. Is it a wedding? Is it a funeral? Why the wolf? What is happening to their feet? I like how the image invites the viewer to make sense of its complex symbolism.”

Paul Johns – ‘untitled (bedroom) from Jerusalem series’

“I love the soft colours in this photograph and how it portrays the peaceful yet somewhat strange atmosphere of the convent at Jerusalem. It is a place I have a personal connection with.”

Yvonne Todd – ‘Emery Weschlette’

“I love Yvonne Todd’s work. I am interested in how her representation of the female subject interrogates the male gaze. Everything about this character is not quite right. She looks like someone who might haunt op shops, retro diners or funeral homes.”

Cat Auburn – ‘The Horses Stayed Behind’

“I enjoyed seeing this work on display in the Gallery a few years ago. I was amazed by the skill involved in making the horsehair ornaments. They look similar to Victorian mourning jewellery featuring human hair that we have in the Museum collection. The story of the horses is a moving one.”

Robyn Kahukiwa – ‘He Toa Takitahi (He whakatauāki: Ehara tāku toa i te toa takitahi, engari takimano, nō āku tīpuna) – (My strength is not individual it is collective)'

“I have loved Robyn Kahukiwa’s work for many years. This is a very special painting. the figures look like the carvings on a pou. I am drawn to the breastfeeding mother at the centre of the family.”

Past Exhibitions 2020