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Dunedin 3: Sam Foley, Fleur Yorston, David Teata


Dunedin 3: Sam Foley, Fleur Yorston, And David Teata At Toi O Tahuna Fine Art Gallery, Queenstown

Toi o Tahuna fine art gallery will be holding an exhibition showcasing new works by Dunedin artists Sam Foley, Fleur Yorston and David Teata.

This exhibition focuses on three well known emerging artists who studied at Otago Polytechnic School of Fine Arts. Each artist works with distinctly different techniques and visual languages yet Foley, Yorston and Teata all explore numerous facets of New Zealand culture and of human nature.

Sam Foley was born in Wellington in 1977 and moved to Dunedin at the age of four. He graduated from Otago Polytechnic in 1998. Since then he has exhibited in Auckland, Queenstown, Sydney and Dunedin. He was recently selected as a finalist in the annual James Wallace Art Awards.

His work depicts recognisable studies of urban landscapes. Each scene is conspicuously empty of people. Sam’s work captures a finely nuanced experience and there is a sense of disquiet and silence, a waiting for something to happen.

His work for Dunedin 3 was sourced from a winter trip to Queenstown. “I wanted create work shifting slightly away from subject matter I had been producing, but to keep it true to my technical method. It was important that it be specific to the region. I feel like I have spent enough time in and around Queenstown to be able to produce works that are significant for me. I always visit that part of the Wakatipu basin and have some great memories of that area."

Fleur Yorston was born in Auckland in 1972 and completed a Diploma in Fine Arts at Otago Polytechnic in 1993. She then went on to gain a Masters in Fine Arts at RMIT University, Australia in 2001. After years of travelling and working in places like the United Kingdom, Ireland and Thailand, Fleur returned to Dunedin to raise a family.

Fleur incorporates elements of the alchemical into her work with a basis of jewellery and body adornment. There is an obvious kiwiana reference and her work has subtle influence from Asian art and culture. Body adornment is cross-cultural and it can represent spirituality, beliefs and ideologies. It can become a vessel of cultural memory. Fleur’s work includes continued references to Gordon Walters and her trademark sepia tones have been added to with a strong ochre palette.

David Teata completed his Bachelor of Fine Arts at the Otago School of Art in 2006 and is currently completing his Masters of Fine Arts. He was born in Mangaia, Cook Islands and was brought up in New Zealand. His work continues to investigate the idea that identity is shaped in part by genealogical inheritance (a common idea throughout Polynesia).

David describes his work as ‘embossed woodblock prints’. Through layering and embossing David creates a beautifully textured print. In his work, Teata explores the use of layering of motifs and patterns to express the complexity of identity within our diverse multicultural society. David uses layering in a way to suggest the re-emergence and reassertion of past traditions. His work also demonstrates the ongoing contemporary relevance of cultural identity.

In his current series of work, David explores the role of the Pi’a Atua within his own genealogy, a term referring to those holding the office of priest and prophet. Their role as a living vessel was to provide vision, guidance and direction to the people. Their presence was considered essential for the success and prosperity of the tribe and nation.

The show will run from 4 December until 20 December 2008 with a preview on the evening of Wednesday 3 December, 5.30pm - 7.30pm.


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