Art and exposition in students’ show

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Otago Polytechnic’s Dunedin School of Art will be transformed into an art gallery for the annual Site exhibition — a showcase of artworks by ‘‘completing’’ art students. Apopular annual feature of the fine arts calendar, Site16 will run from Saturday until November 24, with students’ works displayed in every corridor and corner of the art school. The 60 artists involved include graduating bachelor of visual arts, diploma and honours students. Site16 co-ordinator Rachel Allan said the exhibition, which included painting, print, photography, jewellery, electronic arts, ceramics, sculpture and textiles, would be a ‘‘feast for the senses’’ and would destroy preconceived ideas about the nature of art. It also gave the emerging artists the opportunity to interact directly with the public and galleries, she said. ‘‘The Site exhibition attracts people from throughout the art world, including galleries from Dunedin and around New Zealand,’’ Ms Allan said. ‘‘It is a fantastic opportunity for our students to launch their careers.’’ Among the emerging artists whose work will feature in Site16 are printmaking student Kirsty Lewry (23), photography and electronic arts student Jodie Gibson (21) and jewellery student Brogan Nuttall (22). Each will present a collection that distils their approach to art. Lewry’s collection of vibrantly coloured prints, titled ‘‘Vegebana’’, applies the Japanese aesthetic of ikebana to roast vegetables, to take a satirical look at modern consumerism and the packaging of vegetables. ‘‘There are elements of irony and parody, but also a discussion of our food and what is involvedin its production,’’ she said. Gibson’s collection of large-scale panorama photographs explores industrialised landscapes in the South Island and involved thousands of miles of driving as she criss-crossed the wilderness. ‘‘I am basically looking at our conflicted relationship with nature, and the impact we have had on the landscape through the mass extraction of resources,’’ she said. Nuttall’s 16-piece jewellery collection, titled ‘‘Prolefeed’’, combines metal with unusual materials, including processed beef, in a commentary on consumerism, capitalism and industrialised nature. ‘‘I have made bright colourful flowers using the beef, coated in resin, and also using papier mache,’’ he said.
‘‘It is all wearable and durable, while taking a subversive approach to our belief of what is yuck and what is not.’’ ★ The Site16 exhibition will run from Saturday until next Thursday at Dunedin School of Art and is open to the public 10am to 4pm Saturday and noon to 4pm other days, with a late night Tuesday until 8pm.