MY CHOICE: Taarati Taiaroa / April 2022
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MY CHOICE: Taarati Taiaroa / April 2022

April 2022: Taarati Taiaroa

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 April 2022 My Choice has been selected by Taarati Taiaroa and is available to view until 30 April, 2022.

Taarati Taiaroa (Te Āti Awa, Ngāti Tūwharetoa, Ngāti Apa, Ngāti Kotimana) is an independent curator, researcher and artist based in Ōtepoti, Dunedin. She holds Masters degrees in both Fine Arts and Museums and Cultural Heritage. Her work over the past 10 years has focused on site-responsive sculpture, Māori art exhibition histories and the ethics of collaborative practice. Recent written contributions can be found in Crafting Aotearoa (2019), Art New Zealand (Summer 2021-22) and Toi Tū Toi Ora: Contemporary Māori Art (2022).

In 2021 with the support of Creative New Zealand, Taarati worked closely with Matt Pine to assist him to document and archive his practice before he passed. She is currently preparing the foundational research necessary to produce a significant exhibition and publication of his work in partnership with the Sarjeant Gallery Te Whare o Rehua Whanganui.

See Taarati’s selections on our Explore the Collection ‘My Choice Exhibition Series’ highlight here

(Photograph by Paul Chapman)

Taarati’s Choices:

Laurence Aberhart, Taranaki (with Cloud and moon) 1986, 1988.3.2

“I like the expanse of this image and the relative size of the crescent moon and Taranaki maunga. In a single image Aberhart captures celestial and geographic markers for orientation; sun, moon, maunga, ocean and horizon.”

Matt Pine, Untitled 1979, 1996.8.52

“In the late 1970s Matt Pine’s work became increasingly ephemeral and site-responsive. This drawing is of one of his ‘Environmental Works’ entitled Ring Piece that he installed in three outdoor locations between 1978-1979. The ring was suspended by a pole and cord tensioning system to demarcate the central point of an outdoor man-made space. In this drawing the central ring is drawn as an oval. It’s a simple detail, but very important as it creates the feeling of standing with the physical work and looking across it, as opposed to looking down on it from a bird-eye view. Throughout Pine’s oeuvre he produced many finished drawings of realised sculptures, such as this one, that provide a conceptual and spatial experience of the 3D work on a 2D plane. I admire the quietness and clarity of this drawing.”

Wayne Barrar From within Nancy Holt’s Sun Tunnels (bullet tracks) #1, Utah, 2001 2003.29.5

“Nancy Holt’s Sun Tunnels (1976) is made of four concrete tunnels arranged in a cross formation in order to frame and trace the sun during the summer & winter solstice. A camera is a hand-held sun tunnel of sorts, an observatory, whose operation requires a sensitivity to time, space and light. With this in mind, I find this work by Barrar to be conceptually compelling.”

John Bailey Winter Solstice/Spring Equinox ’83 9.20am, 1985.8.1.4

“This is one of 11 works by John Bailey that document the movement of light on the Winter Solstice and Spring Equinox within the interior of the room. Like Barrar’s From within Nancy Holt’s Sun Tunnels’ (bullet tracks) #1, Utah, 2001 and Pine’s Ring Piece 1979, this work by Bailey involves existing architecture. I enjoy viewing the Winter Solstice/Spring Equinox ’83 series as a whole – I find their variability and progressive movement to be serene.”

Richard Wotton Walls and Fences #1, Cooks Gardens Entrance St Hill Street Wanganui, 1982, 1983.12.1

“I’m a big fan of Richard Wotton’s photography. The Sarjeant Gallery has a great collection of his work and it was very hard to pick one. I chose this work because I like its tight framing and use of shadow. It elevates and transforms a utilitarian detail into something else. I like how Wotton’s series ‘Walls and Fences’, of which this work is a part, is attentive to the unheroic aesthetic decisions that make a place unique.”

Mary Macpherson Desks, Auckland 2014, 2016.4.3

“I find this photograph equally disorientating and mesmerising. The play of sunlight on this building’s glass veneer creates a warped reflection of the cityscape and distance horizon behind the photographer. It is simultaneously opaque and transparent; protective yet exposing; comfortable and alienating.”

Past Exhibitions 2022