Jane Fisher - 'Necessary Distraction' group exhibition at Photospace Gallery, Wellington, 3 June to 2 July, 2022
Jane Fisher – Brooklyn Within Brooklyn
"Cool and understated”.
“A bustling small suburb”.
“…diplomats and Government officials living next door to a house chopped up into five flats for students”.
“…Older people going to the Penthouse [Cinema] to watch The King’s Speech”.
These are perceptions of life beneath the Wind Turbine that I have come across since I photographed the landscape around Brooklyn village in late 2020.
A year later, I began a sub-project photographing the initiatives of Two Todman Neighbours’ Place, which was established in 2021 on the former site of Brooklyn Galleria second-hand shop.
I have lived in Brooklyn and the wider area for a third of my adult life. In making these images, I wanted to convey the colourful quirkiness I have always seen behind the real estate façade - my “Brooklyn within Brooklyn”.
The close-up on Two Todman Neighbours' Place was inspired by their Brooklyn Acoustic gigs that feature local musicians. Two Todman is "a fresh expression of church in the suburbs" run by Brooklyn Anglicans.
As a christened, Sunday School-going child of parents who grew up attending Anglican churches, I sometimes refer to that as one of my "factory settings". Though faith in that sense is no longer part of my life, I remain interested in the social justice orientation of the Anglican church.
I began my project by photographing parts of Brooklyn village and surrounding areas that have distinctive colour and characteristics.
Later I connected with Alex, the coordinator of Two Todman Neighbours’ Place, about focusing my camera on their community. I spent a small amount of time in each sphere of life at Two Todman – creative events, the thrift shop, missional community, church services – and photographed what I experienced. I have exhibited what I think are the most successful of those images.
Sincere thanks to those in the Two Todman community who have supported my project – especially Alex, Scottie, Talya, Luke, Rebecca, Sam and Jess. I have felt truly welcome and look forward to continuing our relationships.
Thanks also to Rameka and Anna, recent Brooklyn Acoustic performers who appear in two of the photos.
Note: Jane's 'Brooklyn Within Brooklyn' series is displayed as a cluster of A4-size prints in the main gallery room. The Two Todman and Brooklyn urban landscape photo series are combined.
Ann Kilpatrick - 'Necessary Distraction' group exhibition at Photospace Gallery, Wellington, 3 June to 2 July, 2022
Ann Kilpatrick - Introduction
My three collections are loosely connected in that each reflects distractions, in one form or another, from our ordinary lives.
The tee shirts printed by Martin for over three generations, celebrate and recognise key milestones or events. Fireworks, used carefully, provide a colourful, noisy distraction from day-to-day life. While Polyfest 2021 celebrates the skills, costumes, culture and performance of New Zealand people including Māori and Pacifica people.
Polyfest 2021 - photographs by Ann Kilpatrick
On 6 August 2021 colleges joined together to perform for the Northern Regional Polyfest 2021 at Te Rauparaha Arena in Porirua. The Polyfest is a celebration of Polynesian culture through dance and song. Aotea, Porirua, Mana, Bishop Viard, Tawa, Newlands, and Onslow Colleges participated.
The arena was filled with happy participants, teachers, students, and people from the various Polynesian communities who helped with costumes, knowledge, preparation, and performance. Many different groups were represented. In the busy, full, restriction free, arena I thought how lucky we were that Covid had, apparently, been and gone in New Zealand. We were soon to find out that relief was false hope.
What struck me about Polyfest 2021 was the pride, joy, professionalism, and beautiful performances provided by the students and wider communities of the Polyfest 2021 event. There must have been significant effort to fashion and craft the colourful costumes worn by the students. The teachers led practices and students supported their peers. Then, young, and older support people joined some of the student groups as they performed on stage. They helped make music, joined the singers and dancers, and generally showed what an extended community working and celebrating together looks like.
Thank you to Kerry Burton without whom I would not have had this opportunity.
I am grateful to the college teachers who gave me permission to photograph Polyfest 2021.
I hope the joy, pride and passion of the students and their community shows through in the photographs I have shared.
Note: these photographs are presented as an 8-minute slide show on a TV screen in the main gallery room, accompanied by mounted prints of two of the photos.
LemonPlastic Fireworks - photos by Ann Kilpatrick
When Liam, my son was young he thought his name was “LemonPlastic” hence the name for his fireworks business.
These photos document some of the work that goes into selling fireworks for just four days, 2 -5 November, each year.
Liam is a licensed pyrotechnician and orders the fireworks early in the year, then eagerly awaits their arrival a short time prior to November sale time. The boxes are heavy, some up to 40kg, so it takes effort to move them off delivery pallets into storage until sale time. We must do this very quickly in case of rain or unexpected customer arrivals as Liam’s business is also based at home like Martin’s Handprint Factory.
These photos reflect the transient nature of firework sales, from temporary locations, outside, in whatever the weather. Firework planning and sales can be challenging. Will the government ban them. Will there be a place to sell from and people to help sell? Will covid shut everything down? And will stock arrive on time?
Note: this series of five mounted photographs is shown in the main gallery room, RH wall, window end.
Three Generations - photographs by Ann Kilpatrick
Martin, my husband, has been printing tee shirts for over three decades. Through the Handprint Factory he serves the local community and a wider online one. His customers, some of whom have been coming to him for three generations within their family, come for tees, which serve as a treasured snapshot, to celebrate or remember events. First and big birthdays, deaths, memorials, reunions, corporate and sports events, the Samoan Tidal Wave, engagements, or other significant events all feature on their shirts. Pacific Island customers almost never come alone, they bring community, their friends, and whanau so they can all agree on what will be printed. Often their children will play on our driveway.
The tee shirts we see on our customers and random strangers provide graphical metadata about the wearer and tell the observer something about the person wearing them.
With these images I want to not only show respect to Martin, his skill as a printer, a patient man, and a mentor for his staff. I also wanted to show our respect for the community around him, the customers who have been coming to Martin for tee shirts for so many years.
Thank you to the customers who allowed me to take their photos.
Note: these mounted photographs are on display in the main gallery room, LH wall, near the windows. There is a series of six photos showing Martin's screen printing factory and five portraits of Handprints customers photographed in the garden by the factory.
Andy Hansen - 'Necessary Distraction' group exhibition at Photospace Gallery, Wellington, 3 June to 2 July, 2022
Andy Hansen - artist statement:
Living in Newtown makes the Wellington suburb a natural subject for most of my work. Every day is a new opportunity to see how this community has changed around me. During last year's lockdown I found myself exploring the aspects of community which are not face-to-face. Examples turned up everywhere; donations to an op shop becoming an unlikely gallery, some shared mischief upon leaving the hospital, an artistic restoration to a neglected building. The members of these communities all add to or subtract from the world around them, maybe never seeing who they share it with, but participating all the same.
As I overcome my fear of portrait photography I'd like to take this work further. I'm inspired by the work of Julie Riley, who often paired her portraits with interviews about the people and their lives. Over time, I would love to develop my work towards the thoughtful and insightful books of hers such as Men Alone, or Our Town.
Note: Andy's photographs are displayed in gallery room 4 (the office) and are for sale. Large prints $160 each, smaller prints $90 each. We also have a few copies of his photo 'zine, $15 each, orders taken if we run out.
Photography Matters II