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Gabriel Lester new Elam International Artist in Residence

Gabriel Lester named as Elam International Artist in Residence

Critically acclaimed Dutch artist Gabriel Lester has been named as the next Elam International Artist in Residence at the University of Auckland.

Renowned for his films and site-specific installations informed by cinematography and architecture, Lester’s residency will take place at Elam School of Fine Arts from 3 March to 15 April. During this time he will have an exhibition at the Gus Fisher Gallery as well as present a public lecture at the Auckland Art Gallery entitledCineast. He will also be preparing work to be exhibited in the 19th Biennale of Sydney (21 March–9 June).

Lester works across various disciplines including cinema, music, performance, installation, sculpture and architecture. Driving the artist’s practice is an exploration of and interplay between perception, imagination, belief and desire.

His practice is cinematographic without necessarily employing film or video, but offering a fragmented and atmospheric exploration of the powerful narrative qualities of light and sound. Using film techniques like editing, cutting, and perspective, his works create tension, suspense and drama.

Often architecturally experimental, his pieces include the presentation of frozen cinematic moments like ‘mood shots’ drawing the audience’s attention to illusion, representation and the mechanisms influencing how we perceive the world. Lester, who divides his time between Amsterdam and Shanghai, says his work originates “from a desire to tell stories and construct environments that support these stories or propose their own narrative interpretation.”

As Elam International Artist in Residence (EIAR), Gabriel Lester will also conduct critique sessions with Fine Art students. Established in 1998, the EIAR Programme invites outstanding international artists to Elam School of Fine Arts for a four to eight-week period. Generously supported by Dame Jenny Gibbs, the residency is designed to enhance contemporary arts practice for Elam students as well and the wider creative community.

Gabriel Lester exhibition
Opens Friday 4 April at 5.30pm
Runs until Saturday 3 May
Gus Fisher Gallery
74 Shortland Street

Gabriel Lester public lecture: Cineast: An artist’s introduction to his enthusiasm for cinema and visual languages in general.
Tuesday 25 March at 6pm
Easy Listening series
Auckland Art Gallery
Corner Kitchener and Wellesley Streets

To find out more about Gabriel Lester and his work visit:

The University of Auckland’s National Institute of Creative Arts and Industries comprises the Elam School of Fine Arts, School of Architecture and Planning, the Centre for Art Studies, the School of Music and the Dance Studies Programme.


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