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Solo exhibition for award-winning sculptor

Solo exhibition for award-winning sculptor

Star Wanganui sculptor Karin Strachan is holding a solo exhibition after a run of recent successes, including graduation from the Whanganui UCOL Quay School of the Arts in April.

Karin’s exhibition, Bird of Passage, will be her first solo outing. The exhibition is at the invitation of Whanganui UCOL, in recognition of the excellence of her work during her final year of study. It will be the first exhibition by a recent graduate to open at the new campus.

She says that the opportunity is a huge honour. “It’s really awesome. I thought that, coming out of art school I’d have a real dip in production, but it’s been a real motivator, to prepare a whole collection, rather than just look as far as the next piece.”

Karin has had recent success with her work at New Zealand’s largest sculpture exhibition, E:SCAPE, at the Waikato Arboretum and Sculpture Park (hers was one of 27 works selected from 180 entries); and in the exhibition We All Sit Under the Same Stars, at the Stage 1 Gallery. She also won the inaugural 2007 pattillo (note lower case) scholarship, a prestigious new award from the pattillo international consultancy firm in Wellington.

She says the exhibition Bird of Passage is about people moving amongst places: the bird is representative of themes of migration. “It’s poetic. I work with ideas. It’s about the issue of being a New Zealander, and questions of where I fit within that. I look at ideas about ‘belief systems’ and ‘truth’. I want people to have an emotional response, to feel something, and not necessarily know what they are feeling.”

The seven works on show are created from gelatine, plaster, wood, text lettering and tin foil. Five were made for this show and two were made during her studies last year.

Whanganui UCOL’s Head of the Quay School of Arts, Myra McIntyre, says it’s wonderful to have Bird of Passage at the school’s new campus on Rutland Street. “Karin’s work is accessible, but challenging and meaty. It’s very conceptually sound and enjoyable.”

Myra encourages people to take the opportunity to drop in to the new campus, just off Wanganui’s main street. “It is fantastic and very accessible to the community, down in the old town. There’s the Waimarie paddle steamer dock just opposite on the river, the markets on Saturdays, the gardens and the new walkway by the river just across the road. So it’s great for the public to be able to just pop in to the exhibition close by.”

Bird of Passage will be open from 10am -5pm, Monday to Friday from 26 May to 6 June, at Whanganui UCOL’s new campus at 16 Rutland St. The campus was officially opened by Prime Minister Helen Clark on 21 April.


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