Dane Mitchell <em>Radiant Matter Part 1</em> 2011. Govett-Brewster Art Gallery installation view. Photo Bryan James

Dane Mitchell Radiant Matter Part 1 2011. Govett-Brewster Art Gallery installation view. Photo Bryan James


5 Mar — 29 May 2011

Dane Mitchell: Radiant Matter Part 1

Perfumes, vaporisers and de-humidifiers form the base of Dane Mitchell’s exhibition Radiant Matter Part 1.

Engaging with the notion of the ‘vaporous’, a liminal state between matter and gas that teeters on invisibility, Mitchell is interested in transitional and ephemeral elements that waver amongst gas, liquid and solid forms. Vapour condenses into water and turns back into vapour in a perfect cycle; the gallery’s air humidity develops concrete forms.

Curated by Mercedes Vicente

Dane Mitchell: Radiant Matter Part 1
Audio Dane Mitchell: tangible intangibles

Dane Mitchell interview on Radio NZ Saturday Morning, 30 April 2011.

Exploring ways of making the intangible tangible, Mitchell experiments with the sculptural possibilities of sea spray, perfume and vapour in their various states, and means of containing, diffusing and releasing these in the air. Perfume is encapsulated inside a silver nitrate-coated glass object in a similar way to fashion magazine perfume ads’ microscopic beads that release perfume on exposure to UV-light. Perfume is also diffused in the air through a hole in the wall or fills the space between glass planes. Mitchell delves into the possibilities of perfume to dwell on thresholds of the physical, the tangible and the dimensional.

Working with a glassblower in Wellington and a perfumer in Spain, Mitchell has developed for this exhibition a new synthetic scent, that of rain. In the past, Mitchell has exhibited or ‘performed’ scents such as that ‘of an empty room’ and ‘of a particular time and place’, or the forthcoming ‘the smell of it all’. These titles reveal how smell is subjective and reliant on language. He describes perfume as ‘a cognitive object, a thought object that takes shape in the brain’.

Radiant Matter Part 1 is the first of a series of three exhibitions that share similar conceptual and artistic concerns: Part 2 at Dunedin Public Art Gallery (May 2011) and Part 3 at Artspace, Auckland (July 2011).

The Taranaki  Artist in Residency Programme is supported by Creative New Zealand and is a partnership with the Western Institute of Technology Taranaki (WITT).