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‘An Opera for Animals’ at Rockbund Art Museum Ocula Report ‘An Opera for Animals’ at Rockbund Art Museum 19 Jul 2019 : Penny Liu for Ocula

An Opera for Animals was first staged at Para Site in Hong Kong between 23 March and 2 June 2019, with works by over 48 artists and collectives that use opera as a metaphor for modes of contemporary, cross-disciplinary art-making. The exhibition's second iteration takes up a large portion of the Rockbund Art Museum (RAM) in Shanghai (22 June–25...

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Mandy El-Sayegh: Productive Ambiguity Ocula Conversation Mandy El-Sayegh: Productive Ambiguity

Moving across installation, painting, drawing, and writing, Malaysia-born and London-based artist Mandy El-Sayegh explores the political, social, and economic complexities of humanity, using a mosaic of information—from advertising slogans and pornographic imagery to newspaper articles—that she subjects to processes of layering,...

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Get Up, Stand Up Now: Generations of Black Creative Pioneers at Somerset House Ocula Report Get Up, Stand Up Now: Generations of Black Creative Pioneers at Somerset House 5 Jul 2019 : Jareh Das for Ocula

Get Up Stand Up Now: Generations of Black Creative Pioneers at Somerset House in London (12 June–15 September 2019) surveys more than half a century of black creativity in Britain and beyond across the fields of art, film, photography, music, design, fashion, and literature.Curated by Zak Ové, works by approximately 100 intergenerational black...

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Auckland

New Zealand

Current Exhibitions

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Contemporary art exhibition, Dan Arps, Fiona Clark, Dan Arps & Fiona Clark at Michael Lett, Auckland
31 July–31 August 2019 Dan Arps, Fiona Clark Dan Arps & Fiona Clark Michael Lett, Auckland
Contemporary art exhibition, Judy Darragh + Sean Kerr, In Kahoots at Two Rooms, Auckland
16 August–21 September 2019 Judy Darragh + Sean Kerr In Kahoots Two Rooms, Auckland
Contemporary art exhibition, Yuk King Tan, Crisis of the Ordinary at Starkwhite, Auckland
20 August–7 September 2019 Yuk King Tan Crisis of the Ordinary Starkwhite, Auckland

Galleries In Auckland

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Institutions

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Auckland Art Fair 2019: Conversations Extended Ocula Report Auckland Art Fair 2019: Conversations Extended 24 May 2019 : Sherry Paik for Ocula

The weather was clement for the annual Auckland Art Fair (2–5 May 2019), which was again at The Cloud on Queens Wharf. This year's edition was a get-together of 41 galleries, mostly from around Auckland and across New Zealand, with 5 spaces hailing from Sydney and the rest from Cook Islands (Bergman Gallery), Hobart (Michael Bugelli Gallery),...

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Auckland Art Shows to See: The Lowdown Ocula Report Auckland Art Shows to See: The Lowdown 27 Apr 2019 : Sherry Paik for Ocula

This year, the month of May kicks off with the annual Auckland Art Fair (2–5 May 2019) at The Cloud on Queens Wharf, where over 40 leading galleries from the Pacific Rim will exhibit. A carefully curated selection of talks and exhibitions will accompany the fair, including the 2019 Projects Programme organised by Francis McWhannell titled...

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China’s Post-Intranet Artists Get Personal Ocula Report China’s Post-Intranet Artists Get Personal 27 Apr 2019 : Sam Gaskin for Ocula

China's post-80s artists are no longer all that 'young', nor do they much need that moniker. With the oldest of that generation fast approaching 40, to call them young would be misleading given how rapidly many of them rose to prominence during the tail-end of China's foreign collector-powered art boom and subsequent influx of domestic collectors....

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Auckland Art Exhibitions: The Lowdown Ocula Report Auckland Art Exhibitions: The Lowdown 22 May 2018 : Anna Dickie for Ocula

The time is ripe to galvanise New Zealand's public to more fully support its visual arts. With New Zealand-born artists like Simon Denny, Michael Stevenson and Francis Upritchard continuing to gain international acclaim, and a Turner Prize nominee in Luke Willis Thompson, the international art world is beginning to take notice of this small...

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Three exhibitions you must see in Auckland now Ocula Report Three exhibitions you must see in Auckland now 24 May 2016 : Kate Brettkelly-Chalmers for Ocula

Following a three-year hiatus, the Auckland Art Fair is returning at the end of May with a suite of galleries from New Zealand, Australia, Latin America and the wider Pacific region. With a distinctly global outlook, the art fair is emphasising a fresher, more contemporary aspect in promoting emerging artists and galleries, inviting the...

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Simon Denny Ocula Conversation Simon Denny Artist, New Zealand and Berlin

New Zealand-born artist Simon Denny maintains an impressive roster of prestigious international exhibitions. In 2012, he was awarded the Baloise Art Prize at Art Statements, Art Basel 43, and nominated in 2013 for Germany’s young artists’ award the Preis der Nationalgalerie für junge Kunst. He has twice been nominated for New...

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Natalie King And Youngmi Park Ocula Conversation Natalie King And Youngmi Park Co-Curators, 'Episodes: Australian Photography Now', Dong Gang International Photo Festival

Now in its 13th edition, the Dong Gang International Photo Festival takes place in the city of Yeongwol, about 3 hours drive east of Seoul. Since 2009, guest curators from different countries have been invited to curate an exhibition for the Festival, including France, Germany, USA, Japan and UK. This year the invitation was extended to...

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Boyd Webb Ocula Conversation Boyd Webb Artist, New Zealand and United Kingdom

Boyd Webb was born in Christchurch, New Zealand in 1947 and attended the University of Canterbury School of Fine Arts (Ilam). He won a scholarship to study sculpture at the Royal College of Art, London in 1972 and continues to live and work in Brighton, England.Initially he worked as a sculptor, making life casts of people in fibreglass...

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19 Gallery: Relocating Frances Hodgkins Related Video & Audio 19 Gallery: Relocating Frances Hodgkins Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki : 18 June 2019

In 2019, on the occasion of the major touring exhibition 'Frances Hodgkins: European Journeys', Auckland Art Gallery has created a miniature replica gallery that includes paintings and sculptures by 19 New Zealand artists who have been inspired by the work of Frances Hodgkins.

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In the Cloud ... the Auckland Art Fair Related Press In the Cloud ... the Auckland Art Fair newsroom. : 2 May 2019

The 2019 Auckland Art Fair is the big news this week in the New Zealand art world. From today until Sunday more than 40 galleries from New Zealand, Australia, China, The Cook Islands, Indonesia and Chile will be vying for the attention of your art eyeballs. Located in the Cloud on Auckland's waterfront the fair, based on previous iterations, will...

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‘There’s a Lot of Emotion’: Artists Prepare for Auckland Art Fair After Tragedy in New Zealand Related Press ‘There’s a Lot of Emotion’: Artists Prepare for Auckland Art Fair After Tragedy in New Zealand Artnews : 30 April 2019

When artist Zulfirman Syah moved to New Zealand early this year in search of a better life for his family—his wife, Alta Sacra, and their two-and-a-half-year-old son Averroes—he was looking forward to showing his work as a painter at the Auckland Art Fair when it opens this week. Instead, he is at home in Christchurch, recovering from...

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The Unmissables: March Related Press The Unmissables: March The Pantograph Punch : 21 March 2019

Auckland Arts Festival has dawned on the city, offering a delicious spread of ways to spend your time this month. However, if you have no idea where to start and prefer a slightly smaller menu of arts offerings then you've come to the right place. This month our review team of art critics Lucinda Bennett, Lana Lopesi and Francis McWhannell has...

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Artist Ruth Buchanan wins 2018 Walters Prize Related Press Artist Ruth Buchanan wins 2018 Walters Prize The New Zealand Herald : 2 November 2018

Ruth Buchanan has won the 2018 Walters Prize for her work BAD VISUAL SYSTEMS.

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Dane Mitchell: Iris, Iris, Iris Related Video & Audio Dane Mitchell: Iris, Iris, Iris Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki : 14 October 2018

New Zealand's artist for the 58th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia in 2019, Dane Mitchell discusses his current exhibition at Auckland Art Gallery 'Iris, Iris, Iris' with Curator, Contemporary Art, Natasha Conland.

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Anonymous donor gives $500,000 to complete Auckland's 'Lighthouse' sculpture Related Press Anonymous donor gives $500,000 to complete Auckland's 'Lighthouse' sculpture New Zealand Herald : 1 September 2018

An anonymous arts donor wrote a cheque for $500,000 to complete the Lighthouse sculpture on Auckland's Queens Wharf when construction costs went through the roof.

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Basil Beattie Drawings at Two Rooms, Auckland Related Press Basil Beattie Drawings at Two Rooms, Auckland EyeContact : 16 August 2018

Senior English painter and ex-Goldsmiths teacher, Basil Beattie, has had a couple of shows already at Two Rooms. This new display in the narrow upstairs gallery presents twenty works on paper, using oil paint and paint stick, rendering symbolic climbing devices like ladders (he uses flattened loops as rungs) and staircases (diagonally stacked up...

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Recent Events

AUCKLAND CITY: THE CONTEMPORARY ART SCENE

With an urban population of just over one and a half million, and one of the most ethnically diverse cities in the world, Auckland has a range of galleries and art institutions pitched to different communities. Located downtown next to Albert Park is the city's premier institution, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki, a European-style art museum that opened in 1888. It has several leading collections of contemporary and historic works—local, national, and international—and presents The Walters Prize every two years, the country's main contemporary art award.

Other significant Council-funded institutions like Te Tuhi in Pakuranga, Te Uru in Titirangi, Artspace Aotearoa and Audio Foundation in Karangahape Rd, and Objectspace in Ponsonby focus more specifically on innovative contemporary art, sonic art and experimental music, design and craft. Artspace Aotearoa and Te Tuhi, in particular, have seasoned and perceptive art directors from overseas, Remco de Blaaij (Netherlands) and Gabriela Salgado (Argentina), who clearly maintain their long-distance connections.

Two university galleries of note in the inner city are the newly revamped Gus Fisher (University of Auckland) and ST Paul St (AUT). Both present national and international programmes, but ST Paul St is especially focused on Pasifika and Māori culture and art with a socially and globally transformative agenda.

There are at least two dozen commercial galleries in Auckland, a few in the inner city, and many along the Karangahape Rd 'art mile.' Two Rooms in Putiki St presents an interesting mixture of photography, works on paper, sculpture and painting. Documentary photography and domestic-sized—but innovative—painting are proprietor Jenny Todd's trademarks, her time running a gallery in London perhaps influencing her programme. Her selection of New Zealand (say, Mark Adams, Joyce Campbell, Julia Morison), Australian (John Nixon), British (Sarah Lucas, David Shrigley, Basil Beattie), Dutch (Jan van der Ploeg) and German (Joachim Bandau) artists is a distinctive combination.

Michael Lett and Andrew Thomas's converted bank in East St—with a walk-in safe turned into a basement gallery, wonderfully 'archaeological' mosaic floors, and ornate ceilings—is easily the most intriguing gallery in the city. The Lett Gallery's New Zealand and international art, mostly comprising of installation or performance, is conspicuously 'edgy'. Martin Creed, Simon Denny, Dan Arps, Jim Allen, Kate Newby and Jacqueline Fraser are good examples.

As an architectural contrast, Starkwhite on Karangahape Rd presents art in a converted strip club that has a spectacular staircase connecting an elegant large downstairs space to an array of smaller galleries upstairs. Directors John McCormack and Dominic Feuch's line up of mainly Australian and New Zealand artists include contemporary conceptualists The Estate of L. Budd and Billy Apple, photographers Fiona Pardington and Gavin Hipkins, video and performance artists Grant Stevens and Alicia Frankovich, and historic figures Gordon Walters and Len Lye, among others.

With such a diverse and complex art community overall, Auckland's art experience opportunities are abundant for those with the necessary enthusiasm and energy.

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