Insight Into Evan Woodruffe; artist and host of our latest fundraiser

Artists Alliance is fundraising to raise critical support in order to continue providing services to the visual arts community. Evan Woodruffe is our biggest supporter and chairperson. Evan has generously opened his studio in order to help us fund raise so we can continue our arts advocacy work. Find out more about the fundraiser here.

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Silk prints at Spring 1883, Melbourne. IMG Ben Clement.

Artist Evan Woodruffe initiated Akepiro Studios in 2007, and today this light industrial space provides work space for fourteen artists. The artists have painting and small sculpture practices, ranging from the serious beginner to seasoned professionals. Alongside Evan, current artists are Leigh Martin, Annamirl Hunter, Robert Frazer, Suzanne Laidlaw, Janelle Wills, Marcel Kalma, Paul Johnston, Sarah Cooper, Sarah Williams, Toby Raine, John Nicol, Roseline Klein, and Jack Cathro.

In 2016, Evan Woodruffe had four sell-out exhibitions, including in Melbourne, Beijing, and at the Auckland Art Fair. In September, he will present a giant fifteen square metre installation of paintings at Sydney Contemporary Art Fair. We have secured an exclusive look at this work as it nears completion at Akepiro Studios, with a conversation with the artist, and the chance to take home a work specially created for this Artists Alliance fundraiser. With his next public shows booked for Hong Kong and Beijing in 2018, this is a rare chance to see Evan’s work in his home town.

Evan has been interviewed by the Huffington Post, had two articles on his practice in Art New Zealand, won the 2011 Molly Morpeth Canaday Award and the 2003 Becroft Premier Award, and has work in significant collections such as the Wallace Art Trust. He is represented by PAULNACHE www.paulnache.com

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24th December 2016, 180 x 280cm, acrylic, fabric, paper, mica on linen. IMG Ben Clement.

” My work develops from observing our age as baroque.

The contemporary baroque is an action that continually brings into being yet never completes, metamorphosing, indeterminate, celebrating the confusing chemistry of form and chaos, surface and depth, limpidity and disguise. Mary-Anne Caws describes it as a spatial order of shifting boundaries that “teaches us to think about reversals, upside-downness, and in-outness […] fascination with what is complex, multiple, clouded, and changeable”1.

I am growing a baroque abstraction of our current urban environment, an environment that now includes our almost simultaneous presence both locally offline and globally online.

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Evan Woodruffe in collaboration with Elibra Fleur, Steven Ball, and Kelly Alyssa Mitchell, Auckland Art Fair. IMG Thomas Teutenberg.

I have covered canvas, walls, windows, furniture, photographs, fabrics, and skin with looping lines, gauzy membranes, scribbles, and map-like schematics in my attempts to negotiate this uncertain, shifting space. The continuous world of the real and the virtual is both muddy and bright, lumpy and smooth, and my assertive decoration seeks to converge the complex and the casual of our current condition.

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18th November 2016, 100 x 100cm, acrylic, fabric, paper on linen.

My paintings are map-like, offering multiple entrances and encouraging our gaze to become nomadic, moving through its metaphors of the world’s process and passage. Writer Lucinda Bennett referred to them as Wet Maps, “living, breathing ecosystems, and visualisations of a new kind of urbanism”2. They propose a fluid way of encountering the world, where the world itself is fluid and porous.

I am currently working on a multi-painting, multi-panel installation for the Sydney Contemporary Art Fair. This work is composed on Fibonacci’s grid, and the 10 paintings in 36 panels cover 15 square metres, spiraling through an equation that both reduces and multiplies: 3-2-1-2-4-16. Within this mathematic, a pulsing green snake twists on beds of colour. ”

Artists Alliance has hosted 28 recent graduates on the brokered Internship programme piloting in 2011 and then 2014-2017.  The programme provides a paid internship for 6 months to give fine arts graduates experience and knowledge they need to work in the arts industry and ultimately support their practice. Graduates of this programme are working at the likes of Artspace, St Paul St, Auckland Art Gallery, Waikato Museum, Wallace Arts Trust, Te Tuhi and Artists Alliance amongst others.  One is studying at the Courtauld Institute in London.  Another is exhibiting on the international art stage

All this costs money.   Help Artists Alliance to continue to deliver success to the visual arts sector.   Buy a ticket to our fundraiser.

A big thank you to Evan Woodruffe and Paul Nache.

1 Caws, M.A. (1997). The Surrealist Look: an erotics of encounter. MIT Press

2 Bennett, L. (2016). Wet Maps: Evan Woodruffe’s Painted Networks, Art New Zealand 157