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Art Basel in Hong Kong: Exhibitions to See Ocula Report Art Basel in Hong Kong: Exhibitions to See 23 Mar 2019 : Tessa Moldan for Ocula

For those visiting during Art Basel in Hong Kong (29–31 March 2019), the smell of fresh paint may still be in the air at the latest heritage conservation project, The Mills, which opened on 16 March to encompass the Centre for Heritage, Arts and Textiles (CHAT), joining the ranks with ex-prison complex Tai Kwun, along with Eaton HK—a retro...

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Firenze Lai Ocula Conversation Firenze Lai

Firenze Lai says that she knows her studio of a few hundred square feet intimately; from the textures of its surfaces to the way the breeze blows into the room. The spaces depicted in her paintings are equally intimate. When curators seem to be at a loss for words to discuss troubled times, fear of containment, and the feeling of being completely...

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Sharjah Biennial 14: Leaving the Echo Chamber Ocula Report Sharjah Biennial 14: Leaving the Echo Chamber 15 Mar 2019 : Stephanie Bailey for Ocula

In Meiro Koizumi's three-channel video installation, The Angels of Testimony (2019), the central frame features an interview with Hajime Kondo about his time as a solider of the Imperial Japanese Army during the Second Sino-Japanese War. The conversation centres on war crimes perpetrated in China, including the beheading of Chinese prisoners for...

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Jacqueline Fraser

b. 1956, New Zealand

Jacqueline Fraser is a contemporary New Zealand artist of Ngāi Tahu descent who gained recognition in the late 1970s for her immersive installations made from disposable objects. Since then, Fraser's practice has expanded to include wire figures and collages that—by drawing from an array of visual sources such as fashion shows, magazines, music videos and movies—critically examine our relationship with material culture.

Representative of Fraser's early practice is He Tohu: The New Zealand Room (1993), for which she reproduced the frame of a Māori whare whakairo (carved meeting house) with plastic tape, wire, ribbon, braid and lace. Exhibited in the then-newly reopened City Gallery in Wellington, He Tohu was a part of an exhibition that commemorated the centennial of the year that women gained the right to vote in New Zealand. In addition to the whare whakairo, He Tohu included wire figures of supernatural entities from Māori legends, hung outside the gallery building.

As exemplified by He Tohu, wire figures and luxurious fabrics are some of the defining characteristics of Fraser's works. In 2001, the artist presented a trilogy of installations at New Zealand's first national exhibition in the Venice Biennale, the 1st Yokohama Triennial in Japan, and New York's New Museum. Each installation featured a series of wire female figures, elaborately dressed and accompanied by poetic texts and fabrics that served as curtains or dividers. On the surface, the expensive textiles and delicate forms of the figures recalled haute couture; masked underneath the allure, however, were stories of violence, loss, discrimination and despair. The printed text included in the mixed-media work The acute massacre of the blessed by the cruel scientific curse « the genetical engineer looks our way » New Zealand Auckland, 8.3.2000 Paris, 22.7.2000, 2000-01 at the Yokohoma Triennial, for example, alluded to eugenics and racial discriminations. It read: 'And so they said to us-«From the second the poor blighted Māori is born he is destined to be psychotic» [from New Zealand medical survey year 2000]'.

Throughout her practice, Fraser has sought to eliminate territorial specificity by referencing multiple cultures. In her installation at the Venice Biennale, for example, English, Māori and Italian texts were used to assert a range of perspectives of the world. In the New Museum exhibition, A PORTRAIT OF THE LOST BOYS «in five parts deftly and six details of straining»—of which A portrait of that dotted boy was a part—works such as Let me pump them bright, force that breath choked. [[Cote d'Ivoire, Australia, Japan.]] call on different countries as a way of alerting the viewer that the image's applicability is not confined to a single place; no culture is superior or inferior to another.

Fraser's interest in non-specificity continues in her film-inspired works. In her 'The Making of' (2011–ongoing) series of installations and collages, for example, the artist creates an environment that captures the ambience of specific films. Part of the series, the film installation The Making of Mississippi Grind 2017 (2017) derives from the 2015 American film Mississippi Grind, which follows two gamblers on a turbulent journey. When the work was featured in the 2017 exhibition Shout Whisper Wail! at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, the walls of the entrance and exhibition space were lined with glittering tinsel, echoing a casino atmosphere. At the centre of one room, Fraser suspended a pink square chandelier from the ceiling. The light fixture hovered a few feet above the floor, allowing visitors to step inside. Fraser's film was screened onto its reflective surface, which, combined with a loud rap soundtrack, impeded easy viewing. The installation also included three large-scale collages, composed of images sourced from fashion magazines, brand textiles and artworks by Andy Warhol, further recalling the flamboyance associated with casinos. As fictional pseudo-documentaries of films, Fraser's 'The Making of' works—which also include The Making of American Gangster 2012 (2012), The Making of the Ciao Manhattan Tapes 2013 (2013) and The Making of Wall Street 2015 (2015)—offer an inquiry into the production and consumption of popular culture.

Fraser graduated from Elam School of Fine Arts, Auckland, in 1977 and went on to participate in the Mildura Sculpture Triennial in 1978. In 2018, she was nominated for the Walters Prize for The Making of Mississippi Grind 2017—her second nomination since 2004—and presented The Making of In The Heat of the Night 2018 (2018), based on the 1967 eponymous classic, at the finalist exhibition.

Fraser lives and works between Auckland and New York.

Sherry Paik | Ocula | 2018
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Featured Artworks

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THE MAKING OF CARBON COPY 2018 by Jacqueline Fraser contemporary artwork Jacqueline FraserTHE MAKING OF CARBON COPY 2018, 2018 paper and cardboard collage on organza over canvas stretcher, nails, archival glue
101 x 76 cm
Michael Lett
THE MAKING OF CARBON COPY 2018 by Jacqueline Fraser contemporary artwork Jacqueline FraserTHE MAKING OF CARBON COPY 2018, 2018 paper and cardboard collage on organza over canvas stretcher, nails, archival glue
101 x 76 cm
Michael Lett
THE MAKING OF CARBON COPY 2018 by Jacqueline Fraser contemporary artwork Jacqueline FraserTHE MAKING OF CARBON COPY 2018, 2018 paper and cardboard collage on organza over canvas stretcher, nails, archival glue
101 x 76 cm
Michael Lett
THE MAKING OF CARBON COPY 2018 by Jacqueline Fraser contemporary artwork Jacqueline FraserTHE MAKING OF CARBON COPY 2018, 2018 paper and cardboard collage on organza over canvas stretcher, nails, archival glue
101 x 76 cm
Michael Lett
THE MAKING OF CARBON COPY 2018 by Jacqueline Fraser contemporary artwork Jacqueline FraserTHE MAKING OF CARBON COPY 2018, 2018 paper and cardboard collage on organza over canvas stretcher, nails, archival glue
101 x 76 cm
Michael Lett

Recent Exhibitions

View All (9)
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, The Like Button at Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney
Closed
13 December 2018–19 January 2019 Group Exhibition The Like Button Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney
Contemporary art exhibition, Jacqueline Fraser, THE MAKING OF CARBON COPY 2018 at Michael Lett, Auckland
Closed
4 July–4 August 2018 Jacqueline Fraser THE MAKING OF CARBON COPY 2018 Michael Lett, Auckland
Contemporary art exhibition, Jacqueline Fraser, THE MAKING OF L'ECLISSE at Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney
Closed
17 February–5 March 2016 Jacqueline Fraser THE MAKING OF L'ECLISSE Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney

Represented By

In Related Press

Walters Prize nominees announced Related Press Walters Prize nominees announced The New Zealand Herald : 22 March 2018

When Pati Solomona Tyrell told his parents he was gay, his mother advised him to make a name for himself and show the world he would be a success.This week, Aotea reminded her young artist son of her words when he called his parents to say he'd been nominated for the Walters Prize.

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Shout Whisper Wail Related Press Shout Whisper Wail EyeContact : 11 August 2017

Ten mini exhibitions from various artists represented in the Chartwell Collection are presented here in an exhibition that is smaller in floor meterage than earlier Chartwell shows, but nevertheless tightly compact. While it looks cohesive, the disadvantage is that the thematic content revolves around sound, as you can tell from the title, and in...

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Other Elsewheres: New Zealand at the Venice Biennale Related Press Other Elsewheres: New Zealand at the Venice Biennale The Pantograph Punch : 12 June 2015

New Zealand's official platform at the Venice Biennale began in 2001, and our formal representation was arguably already overdue at this point. There had been anomalous instances of New Zealanders exhibiting at the Biennale: Frances Hodgkins (she was meant to be in a group show representing Britain, though this was never realised because of World...

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Artists in aid mission Related Press Artists in aid mission Stuff : 4 February 2015

Every week, another funeral. Gravesides. Scattered ashes. An act of love, suddenly a conduit to fear and disease. In 1992, a record number of New Zealanders died of Aids. Artists responded. Implicated and Immune at Auckland's Fisher Gallery (now Te Tuhi Centre for the Arts) was a group exhibition praised for its "initiative, courage and...

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