Hidden in Plain Site - photographs of Naenae by John Pennington, shows at Photospace Gallery from 4th to 27th February, 2021. The opening is on Thursday, February 4th, 5pm-7pm, along with Mary Hutchinson's exhibition 'Windscreen Washers 2012-2018'.
The work in this exhibition: Hidden in Plain Site is a selection of work from a five-year (ongoing) project. Stylistically, the work incorporates documentary, portraiture, and street photography that aims to reflect some of the realities of this multi-layered suburb.
Viewed from a contemporary perspective, Naenae might seem like just another ordinary working-class Hutt Valley suburb. Such a view would fail to register the rich historical, social, urban design and optimistic political organising that underpinned the early development of the suburb. Built to house soldiers returning from WWII, Naenae incorporated elements from the English garden city movement, cooperative politics, the modernist designs of the Austrian architect Ernst Plischke, and an optimistic vision for a different type of communal living. Constructed in the aftermath of a global crisis and reflecting the desire to emerge into a different kind of world, perhaps there are lessons to be learned from Naenae as we think through and beyond our own current global crises.
John Pennington is a Wellington-based photographer. He is a member of the Photobook NZ organising committee. His photographic interests include rocks, urban spaces, and going out into the world. Hidden in Plain Site is his first exhibition at Photospace Gallery.
'Windscreen Washers 2012-2018' is showing at Photospace Gallery from 30th January to 27th February, 2021, in gallery room 3. The opening function is Thursday 4th February, 5pm-7pm, along with John Pennington's exhibition in room 1, 'Hidden in Plain Site'.
"Windscreen Washers is a black and white series I have been making since 2012, though the initial photo that year was taken before I started intentionally doing street photographs. All except one of the images were taken in my home city of Te Whanganui-a-Tara/Wellington.
"I got seriously into my street and social documentary photography during a visit to the UK in 2014. That year, during a visit to Tooting Broadway Market, London, I was excited to see their community art exhibition boards. In 2019 I exhibited some of the current car windscreen washers images there, together with a life-sized 'paste-up' portrait of ‘Jack’ .
"I am interested in people who are sometimes regarded as being on the fringes of our communities, and am inspired by JR, BENT, and other street artists; thus in addition to making fine art prints, in 2017 I started making outdoor life-sized, photocopier printed, ephemeral 'paste-ups'.
"I have previously exhibited other black and white series and contributed colour work to Photospace's 2020 online exhibition 'A Month of Sundays' during Covid19 lockdown . My four self published black and white street photography books can be seen on my website, with copies for sale. I also make free photo-zines; 'clenescrenezene' (edition of 30) which accompany this exhibition.'
- Mary Hutchinson, January 2021
We're delighted to kick into 2021 with a jazz concert in the gallery, amid Murray Cammick's photographs. The Dunedin-based duo, vocalist Karin Reid and guitarist Alex Wolken, are joined on double bass by Umar Zakaria.
Come along at 6pm and have a look at the exhibition just before the music starts. $15 on the door (cash or Eftpos) or $10 via Eventbrite - Space is limited so we recommend booking for this one.
Photography Matters II