STANDS - Stephen Roucher - Photographic exhibition
A photographic essay of provincial rugby stands across ‘heartland New Zealand’
13 September – 30 November 2011
Rugby Exhibition Programs in the NEW Whangarei Art Museum -Te Manawa Toi @ THE HUB – Te Manawa Town Basin, Whangarei.
The artist states; “Over the past couple of years I have been photographing stands that often accompany rural and urban sports grounds. My interest initially was in the form of the structure of the stand (I have yet to see any two that are alike). But also in the vigil that they bear. Occasionally a stand seems disproportionally large compared to the town in which it is found, and would seem to remain as a reminder of some earlier optimism that is now faded”
Installed in the new art museum as part of the district rugby games programs this evocative exhibition of 21 images of provincial rugby stands from Eketahuna to Ruawai includes 5 Northland sites as it traverses the country in the artist’s omnibus series of beautifully composed film Chromira C-type photographic prints. Devoid of their usual Saturday human ruckus and roar, Stands showcases a unique statement of kiwi identity in ‘heartland’ New Zealand.
The exhibition is curated to complement the concurrent Hard on the Heels-Capturing the All Blacks exhibition, and counterpoints the more elite rugby focus of that exhibition, with a grassroots context of provincial rugby from the ‘golden age’ when national rugby reps were ‘gods’ and not merely superstars, and rugby was unassailable as our national game.
Northland Rugby memorabilia also accompanies this exhibition.