“b-sides, rarities and treasures from the Dunedin Public Art Gallery car park”, Olga, Dunedin. Exhibition runs from the 25/2/22 until 18/3/22 Review By James Dignan published in the ODT 3/3/22

One of the potential aims of art is to make people look again at things that they would normally disregard — to view things in a new, unexpected light — and in doing so to see them as if for the first time. This is a major feature of the fabric and installation art of Jay Hutchinson.

Hutchinson’s work takes the throwaway, literally, and raises it to a level where it is no longer worthless. Using as his subject discarded scraps and rubbish found on his daily journeys, he reclaims the items by recreating them and reinventing them as intricate and attractive embroidered pieces. This allows us to appreciate that even the detritus of everyday life can have its own surprising and subversive beauty.

Many of Hutchinson’s pieces are hand-embroidered in sewing silk on cotton drill cloth. Other, more massive, installations include urban materials such as tarmac slabs, steel and concrete. Hutchinson’s works subvert the norm, not by simply making high art from low art, but by making high art from scrap. While this makes us reappraise the everyday, it also posits the thought that rubbish, in all its accumulated glory, will become the epitaph of this civilisation, a Rosetta Stone or Bayeux Tapestry from which our history will be deciphered.

B-sides, rarities and treasures from the Dunedin Public Art Gallery car park install image
B-sides, rarities and treasures from the Dunedin Public Art Gallery car park install image
B-sides, rarities and treasures from the Dunedin Public Art Gallery car park install image
B-sides, rarities and treasures from the Dunedin Public Art Gallery car park install image
B-sides, rarities and treasures from the Dunedin Public Art Gallery car park install image
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Published by agallerypresents.com

Conceived as a two-year project, ‘a gallery’ opened in February 2011 at 393 Princes Street, Dunedin and closed in September 2012. Strategically placed south of the center of town nestled between tattoo studios, sex shops and a needle exchange. What was integral in the selection of the gallery space was that it would be able to be viewed from the street through the street level floor to ceiling windows. This would allow the artists showing to be exposed not only to viewers visiting the gallery, but also those walking past, as a gallery was to represent artists that did not fit within the commercial gallery context or the so called experimental project space’s, this would be the best way to expose a particular group of artists selected by gallery curator/manager Jay Hutchinson, artists he respected and admired and felt were not being represented in the gallery scene at the time.

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