Category: 2021 Exhibition

Grace Crothall : Heat Pits

Grace Crothall
Heat Pits
4-28 August 2021

Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you.
Journeying staircase into chocolate river:
The word Journey sounds too metaphysical?
       …Step-cement your earthly magic.
Does it need tarseal beneath its waters?
How else can belly travel?
           Mallow snaps concrete..
The plated piping will aid in your digestion…
A very knowing muscle…
If you stand inside the milk-powdered pool, you’ll find it resting knee-deep
(with ample resources to climb back out).
How much do you believe in the chocolate’s message?
When it bubbles in tongues it glitches in orange..
But I’ve come to accept that for who it is.
Chocolate patina rightly divided.
         A gluey forthcoming rolls over its fibs.
Who can remove his outer coat?

Grace Crothall (b. 1993) is an installation based artist living in Ōtautahi.
For Heat Pits she has worked alongside Priscilla Rose Howe (design)
and Mitchell Bright (photographer).
With special thanks to Cameron Gray.

Antje Barke : Seven Islands

Antje Barke
Seven Islands
4-28 August 2021

Seven Islands is a solo showing of new work by Tāmaki Makaurau-based artist Antje Tamae Barke. As a meditation of narrative projected onto periphery spaces, these works explore the interpretation of two locations; a road trip in Quebec in 2017 and wanderings in Tāmaki Makaurau.

Antje Tamae Barke is a Japan-born, Pākehā New Zealand multidisciplinary artist whose work explores the intersection of lens-based media and sculptural installation. She completed her MFA from Elam School of Fine Arts in 2019. Recent shows include Iteration 10, Mothermother at The Auckland Art Fair (2021); Elam Graduate Exhibition (2019); Give Me Space, Corbans Estate (2018); and was a finalist in the 25th Wallace Arts Awards (2016).

Shivanjani Lal, Amol K Patil and Niccolò Moscatelli : Looking North, Looking West, Looking South, Looking East

Looking North, Looking West, Looking South, Looking East is a project which explores time, distance and friendship in this era of uncertainty. Three collaborators, three friends: artists Shivanjani Lal, Amol K Patil and Niccolò Moscatelli based in the UK, India and France respectively are exploring how to connect across distance and time through friendship.

Instead of an exhibition, a triangulation, an offering, a gesture, a moment across time.
The artists want to know, can a gesture make a connection?
Can bodies and voices link three points that are normally so distant on the map?
Since 2020 they have collaborated as a way to share solidarities, empathies and reflect on isolation in quarantine.
In 2021, for RM Gallery, this connection written in clouds and code takes on a physical form in an artwork that has travelled through continents and oceans to land in Tamaki Makaurau as a proof of the possibility to cross physical and political frontiers.

Shivanjani Lal is an Indo Fijian Australian artist based in London, England.
Amol K Patil is an Indian artist based in Bombay, India.
Niccolò Moscatelli is an Italian artist based in Marseille, France.

They have been friends since 2017 when they met in Bombay, India.

BAADAL SE PATA JALTA KE USKE PASS KOI DESH NAHI HAI

WOU ASMAAN SE GIRTA HAI AUR HAWA AUR PAANI PAR CHALTA

THAGAT SE KOI NISHANI NAHI CHODTHA AUR DUR SE TEEN PAHAD KI

THARA DEKHNA.

SABKUCH BAHUT CHOTA, SABKUCH PAR DHIYAN DENA AUR SABKUCH

PAR HALJA HONA.

KISI DIN YE BHALU NIKAL JAYEGA AUR HAME EK

HI TAPOO PAR LE JAEGA

51 28 37 0 02 23

19 00 32 72 50 40

43 16 115 24 38

CHOTEEE SE ZAMEEN PAR TEEN PATHAR GIREGA AUR

SAMUNDAR GAHERA HO JAEGA.

Learning from the clouds that have no nation, falling

to touch all-below-the-sky,

walking a body of air and water

impervious to gravity, leaving no trace.

From far away seeing three

distant peaks as one

everything is so small, everything

is cared for, everything

is feathered.

Someday the lightest dune will pass by,

bringing us to the same island.

51 28 37 0 02 23

19 00 32 72 50 40

43 16 11 5 24 38

constellation of the land

three stones roll down the delta:

the sea is a little deeper.

From things flow

7-31st July 2021
Kate van der Drift, Teresa Peters, Shelley Simpson, Kathryn Tulloch
From things flow

From things flow is a collection of works, unravellings, experiences and events that query the concept of agency both within and without our bodies.

Kate van der Drift, Teresa Peters, Shelley Simpson and Kathryn Tulloch are artists working with materiality, processes and temporality. Using an expanded notion of the gallery space which reflects the RM kaupapa of ‘the potentials of an empty room – a space to gather, to think, to talk, to make, to share…’,  the work itself will be created in or evolve within the gallery. In this lively, activated space-come-lab, the artists will bring in elements of transition, evolution and participation both within the material concerns informing their practices, and with people in the space participating in formal and informal happenings. 

Kate van der Drift’s time based and cameraless works are created by submerging film (sheet and super 8) in lightproof holders to the waters and sediment of the Piako River.  A durational accretion created by the action of water and reaction with the sensitive filmic substrate.  Forming and unforming lumen prints will be exposed to light and continue to develop over the course of the show.

Teresa’s rhizomic installations and pseudo archives are made up of small curious earth-born entities in clay and ceramic. She explores ceramics as an alchemical matrix, extending naturally to geomorphic evolution and rupture as the mother of revolution. From corals to volcanoes to the quartz in your mobile phone. Her earth bodies and digital archive will evolve during the show – breaking ground and exploring entropic transformations.

Shelley’s exploration of iron continues her investigation of the alive-ness of metal and the ways in which materials are dense with stories. By co-opting the industrial process of electroforming and of scientific imaging, she asks how we can shift our anthropocentric position to one that considers the liveliness of others.

Kathryn uses processes and materials involved in painting and cooking as a means to re-connect to ecological layers between our experience of earthly material presence and human production. Remnants and ephemera from the opening events activity will be present for the duration of the show.

The Killing – Nuisance

9 June – July 3

The Killing
Nuisance

Nuisance ; a thing, person or situation that is annoying or causes trouble or problems.

But at whose and what expense? Under whose regime, does this ‘culprit’ cause ‘trouble’ toward? This “Nuisance” demonstrates a conjoined, concrete and fluid approach to body making, presentation of body, and self determination.

The Killing is composed of bodies that align themselves with principles of self determination, self authoring, and liberation; from the current regimes of dominance, that historically have attempted to designate subjectivities and construct bodies; including our own.

JA Kennedy – Structure Signalling (Logical Structure or Relating to Something That Happened)

Jonathan Alexander Kennedy
Structure Signalling (Logical Structure or Relating to Something That Happened)

9 June – July 3

Looking for Signal 

Looking for Escobedo 

Where is Elena?

A conversation with interrupted events

The language of interruptions

I lose signal four times every work day. The first time is when the Southern Line train goes through the tunnel before Parnell. The second time is when the train enters Britomart Train Station. Then reverse when I catch the train home. The signal loss is barely noticeable. It just suspends events in time. If I’m on a phone call, the line doesn’t cut but neither person can hear each other for a minute or so. If I click a link on my phone, the page takes a little longer to load. 

The Encyclopaedia Britannica defines “signal” in a communication context as “an interruption in a field of constant energy transfer.” For example, “dots and dashes that open and close the electromagnetic field of a telegraph circuit,” the “tapping of a pencil in a silent room,” or “puffs of smoke rising from a mountaintop.” It describes the changes in a single environmental factor as “interruptions.” It is the interruptions that give meaning to the event that is being interrupted. It is a series of interrupted events that creates a language. 

Signals is the name of the late Mexican artist Helen Escobedo’s sculpture installed at the Fred Ambler Lookout. In 1971, Escobedo was one of four international sculptors flown to Aotearoa to participate in an international symposium commemorating Auckland City’s centennial. In an interview for a National Film Unit production about the four sculptors, Escobedo said when she visited the lookout for the first time she “realised it was such a beautiful sight, there was no point in interfering with it — I had to, rather, enhance it. In other words, one had to see through this thing.”(1) Escobedo worked with steel beams and aluminum tubes fabricated in Aotearoa to create the four forms that look like cross-sections of scaffolding.

When Signals was first installed it may have appeared as interruptions or interventions on the periphery of the city. Each form defines the world that surrounds it. The nature that fills the garden, once a neutral backdrop to the lives of those who passed through it, becomes active and material, no longer “pristine and external to modern urban life.”(2) Together the four forms that make up Signals and the world in between create a language — the interpretation of which depends on the actions of the audience that views it. 

Over time language can be lost. After half a century the sculpture has become so integrated into its surrounding environment, like the nature it was intended to reactivate, we may have learned to unsee it. Deeply immersed in our routines, the runner runs, the walker walks. Onwards and onwards. Repeat and repeat. Only a lone seagull understands. It perches on one of the rungs of the sculpture for a brief, contemplative break.

As the Southern Line train leaves Parnell and enters the tunnel, just down the hill from the sculpture my signal drops out. However, a signal lost will return again, it’s just a matter of time.

By Eloise Callister-Baker

1. https://www.nzonscreen.com/title/four-shapes-for-four-spaces-1972 

2. https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/483e/f11f9a99f4302bede1cb03191977f899c032.pdf

Miranda Bellamy & Amanda Fauteux – A Wardian Case

Miranda Bellamy & Amanda Fauteux
A Wardian Case
12 May – 5 June 2021

A Wardian Case introduces the flora of Kawau Island, home to Sir George Grey from 1862 to 1888. Grey’s shadow remains through the exotic plants and animals he introduced in pursuit of imperial prestige and prosperity. In quiet collaboration with the plants that endure, plant cell signals are sonified in chorus and cacophony. In hearing them, Kawau Island’s botanical transformation is traced and Grey’s legacy is unsettled.

A Wardian Case is accompanied by a text by Bruce E. Phillips which will be available online and in the gallery.

This work is made possible through the generous support of Creative New Zealand and The New Brunswick Arts Board.

Miranda Bellamy and Amanda Fauteux are partners and artistic collaborators who extend the stories of wild plants through site-specific research and experimentation. Working through ideas of reciprocity, animacy, and the personhood of non-humans is central to their practice. By listening to plants and responding through interdisciplinary projects, they queer the constructs that separate human beings from non-human beings and make space for the critical revision of human histories.

Bellamy holds a BFA from the Dunedin School of Art and Fauteux holds an MFA from Concordia University in Montréal. Since their collaborative practice began in 2019 they have attended artist residencies in New York and Vermont, USA, and have exhibited their work in Aotearoa, Canada, and the USA. In June 2020 they were digital artists-in-residence with Artspace Aotearoa. They live in Ōtepoti.

Deborah Rundle – No More the Fruit

12 May – 5 June 2021
Deborah Rundle
No More the Fruit


“Only those who have reflected on their condition will be capable of changing it”
The Right to Be Lazy, Paul Lafargue,1883

In the late 19th century, Marxist revolutionary Paul Lafargue, noted with disdain that the language of desire and leisure had begun to be used to promote labour. Instead, Lafargue advocated the three-hour working day and contemplative leisure, because “only those who have reflected on their condition will be capable of changing it.”

Today’s subjects find little time to plot, let alone organise extraction from the demands of late capitalism whilst living under the burden of a stifling work ethic, expanding workloads and precarity. This exhibition looks back as it thinks forward; wondering on new possibilities for the future. With techno-capitalism on the rise, it speculates beyond automation anxiety – a dominant worry since the advent of the production line. Could a collective political project be the coupling of a work less (rather than a workless) society with the potentially freeing benefits of AI and robotics? A new productive and creative agency, that stretches beyond the logic and limits of extractive capitalism might emerge through contemplative leisure and social organisation, signalling real change in the material world.

Glide Time robotic vacuum cleaner, blue-tooth speaker, skirting board, recording of ‘Good Old Desk’ by Harry Nilsson.
My old desk does an arabesque,
In the morning when I first arrive 
It’s a pleasure to see, it’s waiting there for me
To keep my hopes alive
A symbol of robotification at its simplest, the vacuum cleaner promises release into ‘free’ time through labour saving technology. Spinning along with the robot is a jaunty, somewhat anodyne song used in the early 1980s as the soundtrack for Gliding On, a New Zealand sit-com set in a ‘job for life’ government department. In an age before Rogernomics and wholesale deregulation, working hours were in stark contrast to those of today. 

Happy Hour neon, electrical wiring, transformer
Affectionately known as Happy Hour, the mood shifting ritual of half price drinks marks a transition between work and home. On the verge of irrelevance post synchronised working hours, it sits poised for repurposing. 

No More the Fruit salvaged wood, glass fruit
Reaping the fruit of one’s labour is an expression used to describe the rewards of work, now hijacked by neo-liberalism and its justificatory belief system of individual merit coupled to a good work ethic. 

Driving Seat Sunpearl Progresso pencil frottage of elementary circuit board, 120gsm paper.
Circuit boards heralded the onset of electronic technology and are used in everything from electric egg beaters to the mother boards of advanced robotics. These connectors and supporters of technology are agnostic in respect of function – that is determined by those who own the technology.   

Jade Townsend – Panic Buy


14 April- 8th May
Jade Townsend
Panic Buy

Panic Buy continues Townsend’s examination into waste and the cast away as a method for uncovering economic disparities through consumer patterns. Made with packaging from Townsend’s own consumables during the COVID-19Level 4 Lockdown: cracker and toothpaste boxes are united to form placards. The works are double-faceted one face presents painterly and hand embellished interventions, the other reveals an assemblage of materials.

In the photographic evidence of protest, hikoi, reclamation and occupation in Aotearoa, we can see protestors holding handmade signs and protective guards. The materials these placards are made with reveal much about what is available (or not) to those communities that are taking a stand. The constructed signs also demonstrate the makers’ resourcefulness borne from the urgency to signal pathways forward in The Cause.

Our people can’t afford to panic.
Our people can’t afford to panic buy.

Panic Buy references a specific government and grocery outlet message exasperated across the media during the first rāhui. Please, do not panic buy as there are families who live week-to-week.

Sandy Gibbs – The paradox of failure: sport, competition and contemporary art


14 April- 8th May
Sandy Gibbs
The paradox of failure: sport, competition and contemporary art

I seem to have spent large chunks of my life in swimming pools and changing rooms. Together with the pungent odour of chlorine, it’s a reminder of my 1960’s childhood dream of being an Olympic swimmer – along with my adolescent hero-worship of Tui Shipston who, as a 17-year-old schoolgirl from Christchurch, represented New Zealand at the 1968 Mexico Olympic Games. Idealistically, I believed in the hard-working, democratic rightness of Tui Shipston to win a gold medal – and, more importantly, as a scene-setter for my own future and indisputable swimming glory.

But I was destined for disappointment – she didn’t win.

Of the four events that Shipston competed in at the 1968 Mexico Olympics, she qualified in the finals for only one: the women’s 400 metres individual medley. My hopes were high, and I remember waiting eagerly for the results, only to discover that she came seventh. Seventh… my eyes glazed over in disbelief. Marked by Shipston’s failure to win a medal, it was as if my own failure had also been acted out in that swimming pool in Mexico City. Olympic success was not to be mine. Bloody-mindedly resistant to acknowledging Shipston as the seventh fastest in the world – in itself an act of herculean proportions – I’m ashamed to admit that my hero-worship crumbled and fell away as my own medal-winning fantasy collapsed.

Years later, I resolved to offer Tui Shipston the chance to swim that race again – and maybe win this time.

This was the starting point of this project: an optimistic proposal to restage the original swimming event in the same Olympic swimming pool in Mexico City, the Alberca Olímpica Francisco Márquez, and with the same eight competitors – all now in their 60s.

I rang Tui – but she said no!

This moment dramatically shifted the project from being about failure to being a project that was itself constituted by failures — and in doing so forced a paradigmatic shift in both the framing of the project and its methodology. Contingencies, happenstance and precarious optimism opened up possibilities, and I seized upon opportunities to expand upon restaging as an overarching methodology by obsessively enacting the central character and using my own ageing body along with the language of sport, performance and humour in different ways and modalities as a tool of investigation with which to produce a body of video artwork.

As such, each of the video works is a restaged ‘micro-event’ made in response to the unfolding research journey as I doggedly and somewhat obsessively attempted to track down all of the original competitors – all the while, operating within the contingencies of an ongoing durational project moving towards restaging the final swimming race in Mexico City.

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