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Smells like teen spirit at Artspace - K Road

Smells like teen spirit
‘Justine Kurland’ at Artspace
22 October – 9 November 2002

Panel discussion: ‘A picture for women – fictions in the landscape’
Wednesday 23 October 2002, 6pm at Artspace

In October Artspace will premier 11 new works created by New York artist Justine Kurland whilst she was artist in residence in Auckland last year.

Exploring the rites of passage from teenage girldom to womanhood, Justine Kurland unearths an evolving mega race and places them in her all-girl-world, set against the dramatic landscapes of the parks and West coast beaches of Auckland. Working with young women from Saint Cuthbert’s and Auckland Girl’s Grammar schools, Kurland was interested in watching their own responses to her narrative and let the images unravel, rather than confine them to a predetermined ideal.

“I stage photographs of teenage girls, imagining they have run away from home, gathered together, forming packs in the woods where they live like wildlife. I imagine a world devoid of men, where girls are independent and free, where perfect moments follow one after another. At the same time I create this narrative, I allow it to unravel, so the pictures have only a trace of my directorial hand. Ultimately these photos are about how the girls interpret my request for paradise.” – Justine Kurland

Justine Kurland’s tableau-photographs offer a mythical world inhabited by sprite, adolescent girls. Kurland describes her work as a form of propaganda, deliberately projecting an idealized vision of femininity.

A native New Yorker, Kurland graduated from Yale University and since, has staged an array of solo exhibitions ranging from the prestigious art fair, the Venice Biennale to the hip London gallery White Cube. Her work has been widely published in Vogue, Time Out New York, Artforum, Flash Art and New Zealand’s own Pavement.

Following the success of the exhibition at the Chicago Museum of Contemporary Photography, Kurland’s work will be on show at Artspace from 21 October until 16 November.

Artspace will stage a panel discussion in association with the exhibition. “A picture for women – fictions in the landscape” with contemporary photographers Fiona Amundsen, Greta Anderson, Lisa Crowley, Ann Shelton. Chaired by Fiona Pardington. At Artspace Wednesday 23 October at 6pm.

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