Artist in Residence exhibits at Toi Pōneke

Published: Thu 25 Sep 2014 10:29 AM
Shadows out of time: Artist in Residence exhibits at Toi Pōneke
Other worldly forms suspended in hand woven nets will occupy Toi Pōneke’s Gallery as Natalie Smith exhibits her first solo show, Shadows out of time. Accompanied by monoprints on paper, the show explores the idea of a dystopian society.
Shadows out of time marks the culmination of Natalie’s 2014 Artist’s Residency at Toi Pōneke, supported by Whitireia New Zealand.
After completing a Degree in Visual Arts in 2013, Natalie was selected as the recipient of the residency receiving a studio space at the Wellington based arts centre and the chance to exhibit her work at Toi Pōneke.
With eight exhibitions added to Natalie’s already robust CV by the end of 2014, she gives credit to her Artist’s Residency. “Having a rent free studio to work from straight out of study has really allowed my practice to evolve; it has been a great opportunity and a very productive year.”
The exhibition enters a new area of Natalie’s practice as she explores installation and object making, her body of work is a hybridization of fantasy and reality informed by science fiction and uncanny art.
“I am intrigued by things that are strangely familiar and like to make work that creates a sense of unease.”
While Natalie’s work is inspired by fiction it also identifies with current issues including nuclear and environmental disasters and the effects of overpopulation on the earth's resources.
A recurring feature of the show is the fishing net which Natalie made by hand. “It was a rather obsessive and time consuming skill to learn but having a background in textiles helped me understand the weaving process. It was interesting to learn that net making is practically obsolete, it is a dying art form.”
Natalie draws on a range of media to create her work including printmaking, drawing, textiles and object making often translating two dimensional ideas into three dimensional forms.
Councillor for Economic Growth and Arts, Ray Ahipene-Mercer says, “Council’s proud to support such a prolific artist like Natalie Smith. She has taken the residency with both hands and worked extremely hard, exhibiting regularly and developing her practice over the past year. We look forward to seeing how her future unfolds and to next year’s Toi Pōneke Resident.”
Throughout her 2014 residency Natalie has continued to exhibit inexhaustibly:
Young and Gifted – The Academy of Fine Arts, Wellington – 18 Jan–19 Feb
Kete Contemporary Craft and Design Fair – The Academy of Fine Arts, Wellington – 27 March-2 Feb
Naked – The Academy of Fine Arts, Wellington – 15 March– 6 April
Here / There / Now: A collaborative exhibition with Sydney based artists Jose Herrera (Painter) and Niki McDonald (Textiles Artist) – Zigi Gallery, Chippendale, Sydney – 14 April– 4 May
Lost in Transformation: A collaborative exhibition with Jeweler Amy King – The Outer Space, Wellington – Oct 1
Whitireia Graduate Show – Bottle Creek Gallery, Pataka – November.
Natalie was selected as a finalist in The Molly Morpeth Canaday 3D Award held at the Whakatane Exhibition Centre. Natalie’s work was selected by guest judge and artist Andrea du Chatenier. The Biennial Molly Morpeth Canaday 3D exhibition promotes excellence in 3D art forms.
Natalie already has plans for 2015. Looking for work within the arts to support her practice is top of her list; she will be applying for other residencies looking both inside and outside New Zealand while continuing to exhibit. It is not until the end of 2015 she is planning to take a well-earned break travelling to Canada, but will not be passing the opportunity to look for further chances to exhibit there.
Shadows out of time opens 5.30pm, Thursday 23 October and runs until Sunday 8 November at Toi Pōneke Gallery, 61 Abel Smith Street Wellington.

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