Exhibitions

Gordon Walters

In partnership with the Walters Estate, Starkwhite will present pioneer abstract artist Gordon Walters at the Auckland Art Fair from 23 – 27 May 2018 and at the gallery from 29 May to 16 June.

Gordon Walters (1919-1995) is best known for his paintings employing the koru, the curving bulb form from Maori moko and kowhaiwhai rafter patterns. He Mondrian-ised the koru, straightening and regimenting its scroll-like forms, taking it from organic to strictly geometric. The presentations will include a major koru painting along with other koru works on paper, but will focus more on Walters’ late-career geometric and transparency paintings.

Gordon Walters is a master of modernist abstraction. In early works, Walters’ created configurations in which often curvilinear forms seem to jostle against each other. However the later paintings offer a strict geometry and shapes that butt up against each other, powerfully claiming their place on the canvas, yet with a delicacy of vision achieved through careful chromatic and structural shifts.  In the 1970s and 80s Walters intensified the process by which his sources were rendered down into elemental forms. His later works lean towards tightly painted geometric abstraction, in which pure shape and untextured brushwork further Walters’ translation of natural form into a purely abstract language. There’s a terseness and refinement to the geometric works.  They’re limited in colour, relying on neutral tones paired with contrast for their power, yet the energy and richness remains thanks to the dynamic relationships the artist creates between forms. 

Walters looked broadly for his influences, but his unique synthesis of local Indigenous and international art constantly returned to an investigation of the ways form might interact with space, or another form.  The progression of Walters’ abstraction over 50 years was further refined by his late-career transparency paintings, which explore the tension between interconnected and superimposed forms. In these works solid form is joined by or layered with a coloured repetition of itself, the inherent qualities of acrylic paint offering a opacity and fluidity that allow form to self-dissolve, and interlock. In much the same way that the koru paintings offered an illusion of perpetually dissolving figure into ground, the overlaid blocks of colour both self-metabolise and create new distinct shapes through the sense of oscillation of form and space. The illusionary space created is what Laurence Simmons calls “a conceptual jam of sheer undecidability.”

Gordon Walters is a revered figure in New Zealand, recognised for a long and productive career spanning five decades. The Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki and Dunedin Public Art Gallery organised a major retrospective exhibition of his work – Gordon Walters: New Vision – which is currently touring New Zealand. The Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki also staged a retrospective exhibition his work in 1983 and a survey exhibition Parallel Lines in 1994, and he has been included in many survey shows, including A Very Peculiar Practice: Aspects of Recent New Zealand Art at City Gallery, Wellington. Walters is represented in the country’s major public collections and his place in our art history is also memorialised in the bi-annual Walters Prize exhibition and award at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki.

Aside from Australia, where his work has been seen in Headlands: thinking through New Zealand Art at Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art (1992) and the 5th Asia Pacific Triennial at the Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art (2006-2007), Gordon Walters’ work has not found its way onto the international stage. This provided an opportunity for an important initiative by Starkwhite and the Walters Estate – to stage a solo exhibition of his paintings at Art Basel Hong Kong (one of the world’s greatest art fairs) in 2015, where it was seen by international curators, exhibition makers and influential collectors. Starkwhite also presented Walters again at Art Basel Hong Kong in 2016, along with Arnold Manaaki Wilson and Fiona Pardington. These presentations represent a small step towards granting Walters the international recognition he so richly deserves.

Exhibitions

Current

Upcoming

Past

Layla Rudneva-Mckay | I Roll

15 February 2022 - 19 March 2022

Fiona Pardington | Tarota

16 November – 18 December 2021

Fiona Pardington | Tarota Preview

5 October – 7 October 2021

Jan van der Ploeg | The Other Window

17 August – 12 October 2021

Laith McGregor | Second Wind

3 July 2021 – 7 August 2021

Richard Maloy | Maternal Routine

3 June - 19 June 2021

The Auckland Art Fair 2021

24.02 - 28.02

Will Cooke | Every Wall Is A Door

15 January 2021 - 13 February 2021

Whitney Bedford - Bohemia

Seung Yul Oh: Horizontal Loop

John Reynolds: RocksInTheSky...

For Pink Pussycat Club | as part of THE BILL

Fiona Pardington | Childish Things

Seung Yul Oh memmem

Rebecca Baumann Once More With Feeling

SIGNALS

The Armory Show 2010 | 1001 Nights
an installation by John Reynolds

Art LA Contemporary 2010

ShContemporary 2008 | Gavin Hipkins, Hye Rim Lee, Jae Hoon Lee and Grant Stevens

Jonny Niesche | Poikilos | 17 November - 22 December

GEMMA SMITH - Thin Air

SLIPPERY PAINTING

Performative Geographies

Sampler 2020

Gordon Walters: From the Archive

Richard Maloy

Rebecca Baumann: New Work

Jan van der Ploeg | The Other Window | 17 August to 12 October

the artists in conversation, The Estate of L. Budd et al.

Art of Wine

Billy Apple® and Tāme Iti: Flagged

Clinton Watkins

Yuk King Tan

Sampler 2019

TIKI: Orphans of Māoriland

AM/PM/AM

BILLY APPLE® is N=One

Ani O'Neill

Laith McGregor | Second Wind | July 3 - August 7

Alicia Frankovich

Martin Basher: Untitled

The Estate of L.Budd_et al.

Gavin Hipkins: Block Units

John Stezaker: Collages

Grant Stevens - The Mountain and the Waterfalls

Gordon Walters

Sampler

125

Len Lye: Love Springs Eternal

Richard Maloy | Things I have Seen

Michael Zavros | The Silver Fox

Martin Basher | Devil at the Gates of Heaven

Daniel von Sturmer, Luminous Figures

Martin Basher | Hawaiian Tropic

Nabokov's Blues: The Charmed Circle

John Reynolds 2017

BIll Henson | 1985 -2021 | 21 May - 19 June

On the Grounds

Billy Apple

Beyond Landscape

John Reynolds | WalkWithMe...

Laith McGregor | Swallow the Sun

Matt Henry | Analogues

Daniel Crooks | Vanishing Point

Material Candour 2016

Fiona Pardington | 100% Unicorn

Layla Rudneva-Mackay: Running Towards Water

Martin Basher Birds of Paradise | 13 April - 14 May

Clinton Watkins | lowercase

Whitney Bedford 2016 | Lost and Found

Alicia Frankovich | The Female has Undergone Several Manifestations

Fiona Pardington | The Popular Recreator

Gavin Hipkins | Block Paintings

Gordon Walters: Gouaches and a Painting from the 1950s

In Motion

Laith McGregor | Somewhere Anywhere

Starkwhite Queenstown | New Location

TOTEM | A Starkwhite exhibition curated by Mary Morrison

Group Show

Martin Basher | Jizzy Velvet

John Reynolds BLUTOPIA

Gavin Hipkins Erewhon

Grant Stevens Hold Together, Fall Apart

Michael Zavros Bad Dad

Not Another Art Fair | 24 February -3 April

THE ANALYSIS OF BILLY APPLE®

Layla Rudneva-Mackay

Lovers

Glen Hayward I don't want you to worry about me

Matt Henry High Fidelity

Richard Maloy All the things I did by Richard Maloy

Li Xiaofei

John Reynolds Vagabondage

Clinton Watkins Frequency Colour

BAZINGA! curated by Robert Leonard

Starkwhite Queenstown 29 January - 26 February

Whitney Bedford: This for That

Jin Jiangbo: Rules of Nature

Martin Basher

Billy Apple®: $9,020 AND $5,750 TOP UPS

Jim Speers Long Days

Ross Manning: Field Emmissions

Peter Peryer Edition

Jae Hoon Lee Antarctic Fever

Greetings from Los Angeles curated by Brian Butler

Seung Yul Oh HUGGONG