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ROAR! gallery Outsider Art Festival

ROAR! gallery Outsider Art Festival

You are warmly invited to an extraordinary show

Outsider Art Festival
Opening 14th February – 8th March

ROAR! gallery 55 Abel Smith St, Above Real Groovy 04 – 3857602
Contact Sian Torrington

As many of you will know, ROAR! gallery promotes Outsider Art. But with this show we focus exclusively on this genre, and we present to you not one, not two but in fact 24 fantastic artists. Some of them you will be familiar with, others are new and exciting discoveries. Yes we never sleep, always on the look out for new talent and visionary work. In this show you will see rough and ready colourful and whimsical back yard sculptures from Ray Ritchie, works from the inimitable Ewan McDougall, toast made into an art form by Maurice Bennett, as well as works from Colin Corovin, Charles Cunningham, Fergus Collinson, Martin Doyle, Mathew Squire, Sue Soo, Timothy Leatigaga, Val Sutherland, Wendy Randall, Yelena Barbalich, Teresa Waldrop, Margaret Ward, Victor Bright, Brendon Francis Crosby, Kaye McMurray, Lynda Barrow, Vicky Dooley, Margaret Ritchie, Daniel Phillips, Andrea Murray, and Meta Assink.

This is your opportunity to see a vast and inspirational array of talent and vision all in one room, jostling for attention between colour, pattern, intricate detail, innovative use of materials, singular dedication, and sheer beauty. This is one not to be missed.

In this show we present work from artists who have found success, to those who have used non-art venues to show their work, and those who are yet to be discovered. They sit together as artists at different stages of their career, but all of whom present an inspiring example of original thinking and dedication to exploring their own creativity.

ROAR! gallery was New Zealand’s first gallery to promote Outsider Art. In the four years since ROAR! took this step we have been privileged to connect with many exciting artists, nineteen of whom are represented in ROAR! gallery’s Outsider Art Festival, celebrating all that is wonderful about Outsider Art. We have selected artists who represent the diversity which is inherent in a category covering many materials and forms of personal and creative expression. The work ranges from the minutely detailed to the colourfully loose and flamboyant.

Historically Outsider Art emerged as the movement Art Brut (Raw Art) in 1949 and initially focussed on art from psychiatric patients. Today it fits in a large grouping of art also referred to as Visionary, Naïve, Folk and self taught art. Some writing on Outsider Art instils the notion that ‘Outsider’ makes reference to the status of the maker as existing ‘outside society’ or ‘on the margins’. ROAR! gallery is interested in ensuring the label of Outsider Art is empowering for artists. Outsider Art in this context is about artists working outside the fine art ‘system’, creating art of outstanding originality in concept, subject and technique. We identify this work as the personal expression and exploration of a very individual view of the world. Rather than being influenced by popular culture or tradition, these makers create their own logic and visual language within a dedicated practice. The purpose of the work can be as varied as the form it takes; it may be to create a better world, reinterpret life events, and bring order to their environment or to express abiding passions and opinions. Predominantly the driving force is beyond a commercial transaction or to gain a place in the art world. Outsider artists make work for themselves and for their own reasons.

For eleven years New York has hosted an Outsider Art Fair; Spain hosts an Outsider Art Fair and there are dedicated galleries and museums for Outsider Art in England, Switzerland, Spain, France, Holland, Germany, Austria and America. New Zealand artists like Martin Thompson, Amy Szostak and Val Sutherland are keenly collected overseas, but are only slowly gaining credibility here.


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