Eve Armstrong, Andrew Barber, Kaleb Bennet, Lisa Benson, Kah Bee Chow, Nicky Deeley, Kirsten Dryburgh, Matt Ellwood, Vaughan Gunson, Simon Ingram, Douglas Rex Kelaher, Jo Langford, Richard Molloy, Victoria Munro, Yuk King Tan, Stuart Shepherd, Sriwhana Spong, Nick Spratt, Leafa Wilson and more...
Collating together abandoned sculptures and half-baked artworks, this exhibition aims to facilitate the completion of abandoned artworks and ill-fated projects in the form of a duet. These wallflowers have found their second chance to shine, with the half-finished efforts of 20 artists presented in the exhibition and made available for other artists and gallery visitors to select, adopt, and complete a project. The duet occurs between two parties, the ‘initiator’ and the ‘completor’, a kind of pot-luck collaboration, reworking the available resources and bringing out new potentials from these unfinished and unrealized artworks. From 10,000 red pins to an abandoned powerpoint presentation, all manner of objects and artifacts await the breath of life to bring them back to their former glory as prized pet projects.
This undertaking has arisen after exhibiting my own abandoned sculpture earlier this year. Five years ago I was working towards an exhibition in Christchurch, for which I began making a sculpture of a giant sized tennis ball. Begun with enthusiasm, but abandoned halfway through due to logistical problems and the lure of other ideas, the tennis ball was never completed – its mammoth shell occupied my studio for several years and even survived relocation to another city. Though I could never somehow complete this work, I couldn’t bring myself to destroy it either.
Following the abandoned sculpture’s outing this year, I started hearing similar stories from many artist colleagues, of works that they have begun, yet for whatever reason, not followed through to completion - works that dwell in the corners of studio’s, spare rooms and garages. Works that have existed in a kind of limbo, lingering in the hope of being rediscovered, rejoiced and finally finished. The Duets exhibition presents an opportunity to dust off these shelved ideas and artifacts for prospective adoptive parents.
The abandoned artworks on display are in different stages of gestation - ranging from raw materials to near-finished works. Artists needed to be willing to let submitted works be subjugated to any modifications, un-doings, or re-workings. Gallery visitors are invited to make applications for adoption, outlining their envisaged response to the existing work.
This exhibition acts as a launch for the abandoned sculptures, a showcasing, to browse the merchandise and ponder the options; applications will be compiled and the completing will occur independently following the closing of the show..
Lauren Winstone, Project Coordinator