Shoes for the Wives of the Un-employed, 2015
Gouache on Tiepolo paper
750 x 550 mm
Emma’s practice uses playful humour to reflect on gender diversity through painting, drawing and collage. Cryptic social narratives visualise the integration of new systems of thought as they appear in society. The complexities and nuances associated with these are evident in the subject matter, which is painted as though it’s under a never-ending spell of déjà vu. Celebration, alienation, confusion and displacement are described through heightened colour fields and assemblage techniques, concocting visual slippages between real and imagined figures and spaces. Colour-play leads the viewer back to the earlier construction of the paintings as collages and the cinematic technique – flashback – is used as an artistic device to play with time and place. Through the construction of these otherworldly paintings I approach gender diversity as an open-ended narrative imbued with complexity but open to great possibility. Emma studied painting at Dunedin School of Art, graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2009. She is currently studying towards a Master of Fine Arts at Elam School of Art. In 2005 she spent a year at Liceo Artistico in Italy studying painting and drawing and in early 2013 she was Artist in Residence at Wellington Gallery, 30 Upstairs. From 2014 to 2015 she was a member of The Blue Oyster Art Project Spaces Board of Trustees. In July 2014 she curated a retrospective exhibition of 50 plus years of Pauline Bellamy’s artworks titled Pretty Dreams, Hard Work, Survival and in March 2014 a group drawing exhibition called Drawl 2.