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New Zealand art reaches international audiences

27 September 2004

New Zealand art reaches international audiences

Creative New Zealand is supporting four New Zealand galleries to participate in the Melbourne Art Fair from 29 September to 3 October. They are Bartley Nees Gallery (Wellington), Bowen Galleries (Wellington), Gow Langsford Gallery (Auckland) and Michael Lett Gallery (Auckland).

This is the third time Creative New Zealand has supported New Zealand galleries to feature New Zealand art at the biennial Melbourne Art Fair, an international trade market for contemporary visual art in the Asia Pacific region.

The Fair provides an opportunity to increase the profile of New Zealand's artists at an international level. Alison Bartley of Bartley Nees Gallery is pleased to be attending the Fair for the second time and grateful for the support offered by Creative New Zealand.

"Without the subsidy from Creative New Zealand we wouldn't even be able to consider attending," Alison says.

"This is an important event for Creative New Zealand to fund because it opens up real opportunities for the artists' work to be seen by international curators, collectors and large numbers of the public.

"It's the second time we've attended. The 2002 event was a really positive experience and we received a lot of positive critical attention in the Australian media. We exhibited Anne Noble's work, Ruby's Room, a series of photographs of close-up images of her daughter's mouth."

That exposure has led to further exhibition opportunities in Australia for Anne Noble. She exhibited in Sydney earlier this year, her work is currently featured at the Monash University Museum of Art in Melbourne, and it will also feature in an exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria next year.

This year's Melbourne Art Fair promises to be even larger and more prominent than previous fairs. Eighty-one galleries, an increase from 68 galleries at the 2002 event, will be participating. Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Japan, China, Germany, the Netherlands, Britain and the United States will be represented.

"This year the organisers are expecting 25,000 people to attend, an increase on last time. It's a far larger audience than is ever available here in New Zealand," Alison says.

Bartley Nees Gallery is exhibiting the work of six New Zealand artists: Sara Hughes, Judy Millar, Simon Morris, Anne Noble, Fiona Pardington and Wayne Youle. The artists will all be attending the Fair and giving floor talks on their work.

The Hamish McKay Gallery in Wellington is also taking part in the Melbourne event but without Creative New Zealand support. However, Hamish will be attending the London Frieze Fair immediately after the Melbourne Art Fair, with the support of a Creative New Zealand grant.

Launched in 1988 by the Australian Commercial Galleries Association, the Melbourne Contemporary Art Fair plays an important role in the development and advocacy of contemporary art and artists.


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