Thursday, February 8, 2018

NZ Art World

Haven't posted any blogs for far too long. Everyone has migrated to Facebook these days. Does anyone still read blogs?  I posted this rant on FB last night and someone suggested posting it on my blog. So here it is in it's alcohol fueled verbatim:


 The visual arts got hijacked by the pretentious pseudo intellectual elite in a way that none of the other arts have. Im not quite sure why. As a working painter, i have come to realise that i possibly have just had the ill luck to experience my formative years in the worst possible climate as far as painting goes. The demise of modernism and the rise of the institutionalised museum and gallery system. The big names in the nz art world now, are largely the ones who broke into the scene when it was relatively easy to get work shown inthe, then newly burgeoning dealer galleries, and get work acquired in the important collections, and written into the art history books. Its quite a different story now adays. But things are changing, and the internet and social media - the whole dissemination of information has radically shifted. The galleries and museums that were once considered so cutting edge and daring, are now just sad and drearie places at the beck and call of the local councils that back them. I grew up as an artist in the constant shadow of New Plymouth's Govett Brewster Gallery, which was branded as NZ's leading avant guard art museum, a spawning ground for anyone who was anyone in the incestuous arts admin dept. it was known as a stepping stone for budding and ambitious curators and directors to launch their carreers. Today it has morphed into the Len Lye mauselem. An impressive piece of destination archetecture, that is in the words of an artist friend " an impossible place to show art works in" . The building itself has become the artwork, and the council has no money to fund its expensive upkeep. They are introducing a $16 entry fee. Its just a sad joke.
They cant afford to have decent exhibitions or even maintain all the crash bang wallop stainless steel whirligigs. 

Anyway, ive had far too much to drink tonight and am ranting...

2 comments:

Ian said...

Good 'Rant' ! Gives me a better idea of the art ' scene' in New Zealand. And after seeing the winner of a portrait competition in a waterfront gallery in Wellington was a bit of 'artfully' draped old carpet I can see your point about the pretentious pseudo intellectual elite !
Have also seen your portraits Paul & know how good they are -- to my eyes anyway !
Don't think I will be forking out $16 to go to the Len Lye mausoleum either ;)

Keep up the good work , Quality Counts . Ian.

Maria Avila said...

I love your work, Paul! Congratulations!!!!