19 Dec 2018
The Govett-Brewster Art Gallery/Len Lye Centre is pleased to announce highlights of the 2019 exhibition programme, including major new exhibitions by Mikala Dwyer and Brett Graham, Nicolás Paris, and Yuichiro Tamura.
We close 2018 and move into an exciting new year with Haegue Yang’s Triple Vita Nestings (1 Dec 2018 — 18 Mar 2019), a collaboration with Brisbane’s Institute of Modern Art and the artist’s first exhibition in Aotearoa New Zealand. Triple Vita Nestings presents a diverse selection of Yang's work over the last decade including further iterations of the Chalk Line Drawings (2002- ) and VIP’s Union (2001/2018-19) series.
Accompanying Yang in ushering in the New Year is Flat-Pack Whakapapa by Maureen Lander (Ngāpuhi, Ngati Pākehā). Touring to New Plymouth from The Dowse Art Museum, Flat-Pack Whakapapa considers kinship, family and friendship networks as well as genetic heritage through four installations that explore the connections between whakapapa (genealogy) and raranga (Māori weaving), including a new installation made in collaboration with local weavers.
The Govett-Brewster’s contemporary art programme continues through 2019 with a series of three solo exhibitions centred by our perspective on the Pacific-Rim. In April the Gallery presents a new project with our 2019 Creative New Zealand (CNZ) International Artist in Residence, Nicolás Paris. Bogota based Paris’s practice is informed by his interest in architecture, systems and processes of growth in nature, and his experience working as a primary school teacher in rural central Colombia. Accompanied by an extensive programme of activities, the exhibition is not presented as a finished process or product, but rather, a site of encounter and experimentation, collaborative exercise and exchange. This project marks a new collaboration with the Latin America Centre of Asia-Pacific Excellence (CAPE) based at Victoria University of Wellington.
Our August season welcomes Yuichiro Tamura to New Plymouth. Tamura’s exhibition will draw on the artist’s research in New Plymouth as the 2018 Creative New Zealand International Artist-in-Residence. Tamura has narrowed his focus to a set of relations or ‘strange connections’ between the cities of New Plymouth and Mishima, Japan, using the concept of ‘sister city’ as a critical tool with which to explain and connect disparate and otherwise unrelated situations, discourses and sensibilities.
Closing the Gallery’s series of solo exhibitions for 2019 and signalling the beginning of our 50th anniversary in 2020 is Brett Graham (Ngāti Korokī Kahukura, Ngati Pākehā). Graham is the leading Māori artist on the international stage and as the Gallery’s CNZ New Zealand Artist in Residence for 2019 he is relocated to the intimately local context of Taranaki. Spanning all four exhibition spaces of the Govett-Brewster, Graham will present a major new art work that draws on local strategies of resistance to colonisation offering a counter narrative to the nationwide 250 year commemoration of Cook’s ‘discovery’ of New Zealand.
We are excited to announce the Len Lye Centre undertakes an ambitious new programme of exhibitions around the work of modernist filmmaker and sculptor Len Lye (1901-1980) anchored by a series of annual large-scale sculptural projects commissioned by the Len Lye Foundation. Working from models, prototypes and research materials in the Foundation's archive, the Gallery presents large-scale kinetic sculptures unrealised during Lye's lifetime. We enter 2019 with the first in the series, Wand Dance (1 Dec 2018 – 18 Mar 2019). Taking the figures of motion explored in Lye's Bell Wand (1965), Wand Dance amplifies the experience of this singular work with an arrangement of six Wands in a circle, surrounding a slightly larger wand in the centre, enveloping the viewer in Lye's choreographed dance. The second in the series follows in December 2019 with Sky Snakes, elements of which will debut in Len Lye Motion Composer, a survey of Lye's work presented by Museum Tinguely, Basel (23 Oct 2019 – 26 Jan 2020).
The Govett-Brewster continues to explore the cinematic world, led by the experimental work of Len Lye and expanded through the ongoing Projection Series. In April we welcome our annual commission from Circuit: Artist Film and Video Aotearoa New Zealand. Projection Series #13: Suspended Agency, an installation by Peter Wareing welcomes the London based artist back to New Zealand with a new four channel installation. In August the series returns to a cinema setting with Projection Series #14 curated by our 2015 International Film Curator in Residence, Kathy Geritz (Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive).
In April we launch the first of the Len Lye Centre’s ramp commissions, large-scale installations to exploit the cathedral-like architecture of the award winning Len Lye Centre. Spanning multiple seasons, the ramp commissions marry the architectural platform of the Len Lye Centre with the inspiration of Len Lye’s interest in scale. Commissioned to launch the series is Melbourne-based Mikala Dwyer, famed for her experiential and idiosyncratic installation and sculpture.
An expanded programme in 2019 welcomes the return of the Gallery's Open Window programme. Initiated in 2008 and in hiatus since the development of the Len Lye Centre, the Open Window programme invites locally connected and nationally emerging artists to the Gallery to produce a 24 hours/7 days a week exhibition in the Gallery's street-front project space. Four exhibitions are scheduled annually in the Open Window which has previously featured artists including Fiona Connor and Yona Lee. We relaunch with Taranaki-based artist Jacqueline Elley (Dec 2018 – Mar 2019).
Details of these exhibitions and the larger Govett-Brewster programme for 2019 will be available on our website.