Award-winning rose-growers. Rodeo cowboys. ‘Universe’-straddling drag queens. These seemingly disparate individuals, along with many more from the length and breadth of the country, are brought together in a loving tribute to the unsung New Zealand achiever, Champions: New Zealand Winners, toured to nine major galleries across New Zealand
Casson, her husband and two year old son spent 101 days touring the country pulling a 1970’s caravan searching for champions and winners from all walks of life. The portraits in this exhibition are the fruit of Casson’s desire to capture the dedication, self-belief and good old Kiwi ‘can-do’ attitude that make New Zealanders who they are. Each champion has a remarkable story which Casson has recounted along side her engaging photographs in her book, Champions: New Zealand Winners, published by Random House NZ.
The Blue Room features the work of thirteen artists - some are believers, some skeptics, but all raise questions about the fascination with the psychic that haunts us now - from television shows to the internet and touring psychics.
The Big Idea: You've curated an upcoming exhibition The Blue Room that has shown in Dunedin and New Plymouth, what's it like to stage a touring exhibition? Has it been difficult?
Pippa Sanderson: I had a really good mentor through this process – Rob Garrett, whom I’ve known for a long time as an artist, teacher and arts manager. I approached him quite early on, anticipating that the logistics of managing a touring show as an independent curator was going to be challenging. He’s been a great practical and psychological supporter through the process, and I recommend independent curators to him!
There are lots of details to consider. It’s helpful to get on top of your documentation and time lines from the start. And to contact and confirm things with people religiously. Also, find whatever method of communication suits you best, to make sure that shyness or any other obstacle to communication (yours or other peoples), doesn’t slow down or derail the project.
Norm & Noeleen are two personal photographic series which reflect the story of many of the aged in our society. Bernie Harfleet’s work records his father Norm (89) over a seven-month period – from his initial cancer diagnosis to after his death. Donna Sarten documents her mother Noeleen (85) and her increasing dementia. Both Norm and Noeleen have a determination to stay in their own homes, while at the same time battling increasing health issues and the disempowerment age can bring.
Originally exhibited as two adjacent exhibitions at Corban Estate Arts Centre, the artists wished to extend the project and developed a co-jointing touring exhibition with Rob Garrett’s detailed ‘how-to’ advice.