Material Candour 2016

5-22 July 2016

Starkwhite is pleased to present Material Candour, a group show by Gavin Hipkins (NZ), Richard Maloy (NZ) and Daniel von Sturmer (AUS). The three installations in the exhibition foreground process as a core component of the works, not just the work behind the works. The measure of these pieces is a function of the handwork they occasion as well as what they call forth. 

Drawing on the experimental approaches of the 1920s avant-garde, Gavin Hipkins arranges polystyrene balls and rings on light-sensitive paper and then exposes then to light to make his photograms. The subject matter is typically banal and pointedly inconsequential, but repeated, massed and marshaled, the cumulative effect is monumental signposting his interest in failed utopias. Curator Robert Leonard says: “Hipkins’ retro-modernist arrangements hark back to a time when photography’s new ways of seeing were optimistically linked to a new view of the modern world aligned with both progressive social programmes (Rodchenko and Moholy-Nagy) and fascist ones (Riefenstahl).“

In Material Candour Hipkins presents The Port (2000), a 12-part work of photograms, each measuring 760 x 1000 mm. Another 32-part work from this series, The Coil (1998), is currently showing in Emanations: The Art of the Cameraless Photograph at the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery.

From a distance Richard Maloy’s Yellow Structure appears to be a solid, monumental form – a rock-like sculpture that is formal and minimal in nature. It draws viewers in, where on closer inspection it reveals its humble, degradable construction of common industrial materials – cardboard, tape and paint. The hand of the artist is apparent in the wonky construction, DIY taping and slapdash paint job. All visible structural components are wrapped in cardboard and painted so the entire piece, even the posts and struts, appear to be hand-made of light-weight cardboard – a monumental mass with no apparent signs of support, that could collapse or fall apart.

Yellow Structure (variation) is an upside down version of Maloy’s sculpture presented in the Encounters section of Art Basel Hong Kong in March this year, which was curated by Alexie Glass-Kantor. Rather than presenting a finished work at the launch of Material Candour, Maloy will continue to develop his sculpture throughout the duration of the exhibition.

The artist wishes to acknowledge the generous support of the Asia New Zealand Foundation and Creative New Zealand, delivered through the Asia/New Zealand Co-commissioning Fund, with the presentation of Yellow Structure at Art Basel Hong Kong and Starkwhite.

Daniel von Sturmer’s video small world (chalk drawing) begins with a black screen. A moment later a hand appears at the bottom of the screen holding a piece of chalk, which traces a not-quite-perfect circle on the rotating black ground. The hand pulls away and the circle continues to rotate, then the hand reappears holding an eraser and the line soon disappears leaving a black screen, ending as it began.  As Tara McDowell observes: “von Sturmer’s videos connect to a longstanding tradition of drawing as studio practice, though here that very practice becomes the work, carefully composed and executed.”

The exhibition also includes small world (landscape painting) where multiple lines of white paint drip down from an unseen source, slowly coating the surface. Eventually the white paints covers its allotted area so completely “that it cedes its own materiality, so palpable as wet paint, in pure image,” says McDowell. “It is testament to von Sturmer’s intuitive and deft touch with his medium that he makes us feel the materiality of the thing depicted, as if we could reach out and touch it even though we know it is an illusion.”

 Daniel von Sturmer is represented by Anna Schwartz Gallery, Melbourne and we are grateful for their support for this exhibition.

Artist Bios

Gavin Hipkins is an Auckland-based artist who works with photography and moving image. He has been described as a ‘tourist of photography’ reflecting a strategic treatment of eclectic styles and diverse photographic techniques. Over the last two decades his practice has engaged postcolonial, architectural, and commodity discourses via a range of analogue and digital technologies, photo-installations, and artist videos. In 2010 he started making fragmented narrative films that frequently call on nineteenth-century references, and adapts these writings to contemporary settings. His projects engage film as a cinematic art that blurs definable genres between drama, documentary, film essay, and experimental narrative structures. 

Hipkins represented New Zealand at the 1998 Sydney Biennale, and the 2002 Sao Paulo Biennale. Residencies include the inaugural residency for New Zealand artists at Artspace Sydney (1998), the International Studio and Curatorial Program in New York (2006), and the McCahon Residency Auckland (2007).

He has exhibited widely including: International Film Festival Rotterdam, The Netherlands (2015); The Jewish Museum, New York, USA (2015); Museum of Arts and Design (MAD), New York, USA (2014); City Art Centre, Edinburgh Art Festival, Scotland (2014); Internationale Kurzfilmtage Oberhausen, Germany (2013); Armory Film, The Armory Show, New York (2012); Centre Pompidou, Paris, France (2011); Austrian Museum of Applied Art and Contemporary Art (MAK), Vienna, Austria (2011); Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane, Australia (2010); San Diego Museum of Photographic Arts, San Diego, California, USA (2007); International Museum of Photography and Film at George Eastman House, Rochester, New York, USA, (2006); Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne, (2004); Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, USA (2000); Palazzo Re Rebaudengo, Guarene d’ Alba, Italy, (2000).

Richard Maloy works in a wide range of media, including sculpture, photography, video and installation. He was awarded the inaugural Fulbright-Wallace award in 2009 and travelled to the United Sates of America as a visiting Fulbright Scholar in 2010 to take up a three-month artist residency at the Headlands Center of the Arts in San Francisco. In 2008, he was awarded a three-month residency, at Artspace Sydney. From 2009 onwards Maloy has produced many large scale cardboard constructions at public art galleries and Museums and for biennials and Triennials though-out Australasia.

Recent exhibitions include: Yellow Structure, Ecounters, Art Basel Hong Kong (2016), curated by Alexie Glass-Kantor; Freedom Farmers, Auckland Art Gallery (2013), curated by Natasha ConlandStarkwhite, Auckland (2013Big Yellow, Museum of Modern Art, Asia Pacific Triennial (2013) curated by Maud Page and Ruth McDougall; Green Structure, Gertrude Contemporary Melbourne (2011), curated by Amita Kirpalani; Inside Outside Upside Down, City Gallery, Wellington (2010), curated by Heather Galbraith; Green Structure Part Two, SCAPE Biennial (2010), curated by Blair French; Raw Attempts, ARTSPACE, Auckland (2009/10), curated by Emma Bugden; For Keeps: Sampling recent acquisitions from the Chartwell Collection, Auckland Art Gallery (2009), curated by Natasha Conland; curated by Stuart Bailey; Remember New Zealand, Sao Paulo Biennial, Brazil (2004), curated by Tobias Burger.

Daniel von Sturmer’s practice involves video, photography, installation and architectural interventions. His works have their basis in traditional media such as paint and sculpture, often referencing abstraction, still life, modernism and minimalism. His works draw connections between psychology and philosophy and aim to make manifest the psychological and perceptual elements at play in the encounter with artworks.

He represented Australia in the 52nd Venice Biennale in 2007 and in the 14th Biennale of Sydney, and was a finalist in the 2004 Walters Prize.

Recent exhibitions include: Electric Light (forthcoming), Anna Schwartz Gallery, Melbourne (2016); Camera Ready Actions and Focus & Field, Young Projects Los Angeles (2016); The Brain, Te Uru Contemporary Art Gallery, curated by Christina Read (2015); An Imprecise Science, Artspace, Sydney, curated by Alexi Glass-Kantor and Talia Linz (2015); Optical Mix Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, curated by Juliana Engberg (2014); After Images, Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne (2013); Production Stills, Courtenay Place Lightboxes, Wellington (2013); Shape-shifters, Dunedin Public Art Gallery, curated by Lauren Gutsell (2013); Contact, Frankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt, curated by Aaron Kreisler ((2012); Old Genes, Govett-Brewster Art Gallery (2011); and The Object of Things, Australia Pavilion, Venice Biennale (2007).

Located in New Zealand on Auckland’s Karangahape Road, Starkwhite presents a programme of artists’ projects, solo shows by represented and invited artists, and independently curated exhibitions.





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