Abram Hunter, Alan Constable, Brendan Huntley, Deborah Rundle, Hannah Valentine, Karl Fritsch, Oscar Perry, PĀNiA!, Peter Hawkesby, Rob McHaffie, Shannon Rush, Virginia Leonard, Isobel Thom, Areez Katki, Denis O'Connor, Nell, Don Driver, Laurie Steer, Guy Ngan

Hot Mess

27 Nov – 20 Dec 2019

INSTALLATION VIEW, Hot Mess
INSTALLATION VIEW, Hot Mess
INSTALLATION VIEW, Hot Mess
INSTALLATION VIEW, Hot Mess
Don Driver, Carnival 2, 1992
wood, acrylic, mirrored plastic, plastic pipe, doll parts, metal tin, radio components, plastic lids, hot glue, wire, screws, 470 × 425 × 240mm
Abram Hunter, Karate Preacher, 2019
plastic, resin, acrylic, paper, screenprint, card, 225 × 160 × 35mm
Abram Hunter, Grifon Galactico, 2019
plastic, resin, acrylic, screenprint, card, 227 × 152 × 35mm
Deborah Rundle, A dream seems like a dream, 2018
Olivetti typewriter, desk, desk blotter, paper, 745 × 1000 × 500mm
Alan Constable, Not titled, 2019
earthenware, glaze, 175 × 210 × 160mm
Alan Constable, Not titled, 2019
earthenware, glaze, 270 × 180 × 220mm
Karl Fritsch, Ring, 2018
silver, plaster, 100 × 60 × 50mm
Hannah Valentine, Anytime (I.G.), 2019
cast bronze, Beal cord, powder-coated steel, plywood, castors, 880 × 750 × 500mm
Hannah Valentine, Anytime, 2019
cast bronze, Beal cord, powder-coated steel, 500 × 150 × 35mm
Nell, The ghost who walks will never die, 2019
hand blown glass, 222 × 144 × 160mm
Nell, Every eye shall see Her, 2019
epoxy clay, pigment, plastic, 195 × 200 × 154mm
PĀNiA!, School of Engineering, 2018
resin, acrylic, straw, tāniko headband, sticker, 300 × 220 × 110mm
PĀNiA!, Sore Horse, 2019
wood, powder-coated steel, leather, metal fitting, hobby horse head, dowel, duster, wheels, fake eyelashes, Band-Aid, bandage, 1200 × 1300 × 490mm
Peter Hawkesby, Finn McCool's Cot, 2019
stoneware, epoxy, concrete, 385 × 330 × 240mm
Peter Hawkesby, Finn McCool's Rattle, 2019
stoneware, epoxy, brick, 360 × 150 × 150mm
Virginia Leonard, They Will Stone You and Say Good Luck, 2019
ceramic, resin, lustre, aluminium, paint marker, 1390 × 600 × 460mm
Areez Katki, August (after Novelli's poetry reading tour), 2019
cotton hand-embroidery, musk khadi handerkerchief, 450 × 450mm
Areez Katki, Vitrine of gestures, 2019
cotton hand-embroidery, musk khadi handerkerchief, 450 × 450mm
Rob McHaffie, Summer, 2019
porcelain, earthenware, 230 × 230 × 120mm
Denis O'Connor, Bowl of the Pohutukawa Smoke, 1983
Te Matuku Bay Creek clay, salt glaze, ebonised Putiki pohutukawa, Welsh slate, 370 × 230 × 230mm
Denis O'Connor, Mystery Wheelie Ware, 1983
porcelain, salt glaze, tumbled coromandel pebbles, ebonised Japanese cedar pottery box, 300 × 250 × 210mm
Oscar Perry, untitled (ashtray sculpture), 2017
oil, ash tray, 30 × 190 × 230mm
Guy Ngan, Untitled (blade- and crank-form sculpture), 1980 - 1990
wood, acrylic, plastic pipe, chipboard, 1810 × 300 × 300mm
Brendan Huntley, Untitled (lucky pinhead 1), 2018
raku, glaze, berry pins, 40 × 35mm
Brendan Huntley, Untitled (lucky pinhead 2), 2018
raku, glaze, berry pins, 145 × 45mm
Brendan Huntley, Untitled (lucky pinhead 3), 2018
stoneware, glaze, berry pins, 90 × 80mm
Brendan Huntley, Untitled (lucky pinhead 4), 2018
stoneware, glaze, berry pins, 65 × 60mm
Brendan Huntley, Untitled (lucky pinhead 5), 2018
raku, glaze, berry pins, 65 × 80mm
Laurie Steer, Untitled, 2019
stoneware, 540 × 70 × 70mm
Isobel Thom, Tea Light Heater 1, 2019
ceramic, tea light, 150 × 110 × 110mm
Isobel Thom, Tea Light Heater 2, 2019
ceramic, tea light, 160 × 125 × 125mm
Isobel Thom, Tea Light Heater 3, 2019
ceramic, tea light, 175 × 135 × 120mm
Shannon Rush, Fist, 2019
Blu Tack, pastel, sticker, 200 × 195 × 125mm
Shannon Rush, Rosie, 2019
Blu Tack, pastel, fluff, 350 × 220 × 150mm

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Abram Hunter, Alan Constable, Brendan Huntley, Deborah Rundle, Hannah Valentine, Karl Fritsch, Oscar Perry, PĀNiA!, Peter Hawkesby, Rob McHaffie, Shannon Rush, Virginia Leonard, Isobel Thom, Areez Katki, Denis O'Connor, Nell, Don Driver, Laurie Steer, Guy Ngan

Hot Mess

27 Nov – 20 Dec 2019

Hot Mess presents a broad selection of contemporary and modern works from a range of artists, all of whom could be described as “makers.” These practitioners range from emerging artists to established canonical figures, but their common factor is an interest in the materiality and process of making. While much of contemporary societal interaction and discourse has retreated into the digital realm, there has also been a resurgence of interest in craft and object-based practice, although in a way that eschews hierarchical models in favour of a democratised, inclusive approach.

In 1962, George Kubler wrote the following, in his seminal text on the history of material culture The Shape of Time: “Like crustaceans we depend for survival upon an outer skeleton, upon a shell of historic cities and houses filled with things belonging to definable portions of the past.” This vision of humanity’s relationship to our tangible culture has been dramatically reconfigured by both the vagaries of post-industrial society, in which the objects an average person owns are far too disposable and arbitrary to form the kind of artefactual exoskeleton Kubler envisions, and by the rise of the internet, which pushes society towards the abandonment of physicality itself.

In this context, how does an artist function as a craftsperson, and how does their work handle the uncertain status of the object? Hot Mess contains everything from traditional ceramic bowls to bespoke toy action figures, from found-object assemblages to bronze casts to embroideries. Rather than a hard shell that adheres to and defines our way of thinking, perhaps these objects are a kind of diffuse field or constellation, each a unique node in a network that connects disparate ideas and identities.

Don Driver’s sinister 1992 work Carnival 2 sits alongside Peter Hawkesby’s Finn McCool’s Cot and Finn McCool’s Rattle (both 2019), presenting two different but complementary approaches to assemblage. Where Driver’s work is loose and allusive, deploying its found materials as both signifiers and as formal elements, Hawkesby’s ceramic-based assemblages are meditative and elegantly composed. However, both speak a common language of ritual and pageant.

Hannah Valentine’s bronze work Anytime (2019) comments on the contemporary obsession with fitness and health, while also deploying the materiality of its metal components to create a playful sense of tension. Meanwhile, Karl Fritsch’s Ring (2018) deals with materials in a different way; it is a small vase-like object cast from a kilogram of pure silver, with the remnants of casting plaster still clinging to its oxidised surface. Ring's materiality is intrinsically tied to its value, a relationship that Fritsch often exploits in his works to subvert the expectations placed on jewellery.

Elsewhere in the exhibition, Denis O’Connor’s Mystery Wheelie Ware (1983) likewise takes an idiosyncratic approach to the tradition of craft, in this case ceramics, by incorporating text and imagery into an otherwise conventional bowl-form.

Vital, energetic, robust and often subversive, these works assert the importance of craft and materiality in contemporary practice. Ranging from the sublime to the absurd, the works in Hot Mess show that the craft of making still has the capacity to surprise and inspire.