After a sustained period of working monochromatically, colour makes a dramatic re-entry into Glen Wolfgramm’s latest work.
Appropriately entitled ‘Colors’, this recent work deploys colour like an explosive, adding complexity and tension to the patterns that hint of tapa cloth, carvings, foliage, fish and birds – yet never quite resolve themselves. The deliberate US English spelling of the single word title, suggests other possible insights into the works’ energy and collision, questioning what force this predominant culture has on Pasifika culture, and Wolfgramm’s mark-making.
TJ McNamara described Wolfgramm’s work in his 2007 exhibition as having “Auckland in the foreground; Polynesia in the background.” This is also true of these recent paintings, in which polynesian motifs emerge obscurely from within the vivid colours, spliced with marks reminiscent of the pace and energy of city-living.
‘Islander’ (2013), an impressive loose canvas painting featured in Pataka’s exhibition ‘Tonga ‘I Onopooni Tonga Contemporary’, was aptly described by Mark Amery as “lashed together by strident mark-making that celebrates the old and the new coming together, creating new spaces, whilst also somehow expressing an anxiety about what all this melding of forms is bringing.”
This latest work harnesses all of the energy inherent in previous shows, and detonates a series of deeper, more sustained explosions.
15 July – 2 August
Orexart, Arch Hill, Auckland
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