Alexis Neal and Elke Finkenauer | Something to Remember

Opening event Friday May 4, from 5.30pm

The Gus Fisher Gallery, Auckland

Something to Remember is a collaborative exhibition which refers to the act of refiguring a past as contingent in the present. The work, which includes lithography, screenprint, debossment, foil stamped texts, sculptural installation and artist books, considers the process of forming identity influenced by community, place, role-models, and experiences; as well as the structures providing contexts within which identity is established.

The point of departure for the exhibition was the artists’ individual and collective response to ideas emerging from Nothing to Remember and Ode to Forgetfulness – two artist books created by Louise Bourgeois not long before her death. Within these works there is an absence of specificity that could be described as a reflection on the collective forgetting that inevitably extinguishes subjective details. Fragmented and reconfigured, ideas are remembered as forgotten.

Pivotal to Something to Remember is the idea that the past is crucial in informing the present, central to who we are and how we identify ourselves. In Neal and Finkenauer’s work this is manifested through ideas on narrative. Neal focusses on the role narratives about the past play in the creation of a national identity. In Something to Remember Neal revisits her childhood memories, reflecting on learning, identity, and place. She inserts her identity into her work as a means of recreating the past, yet not denying her family colonial history, recognising how colonisation has shaped contemporary society. Finkenauer’s work reflects on knowledge gleaned from the unsaid – lessons often learned in hindsight with the benefit of distance. She considers issues of voice and visibility; and the impact of clichéd, often gendered, narratives on collective perspectives.

Alexis Neal (of New Zealand/Maori descent) lives in New Zealand. She has an MFA from Slade School of Fine Art (2000) and a PgDipFA/BFA from Elam School of Fine Arts (1997). Alexis has exhibited extensively, major shows include Whare Taonga, with Rona Osborne at Sarjeant Gallery, Whanganui (2012); Tyle Cottage residenecy, Whenua ki te Whenua, Pura Te Manihera McGregor at Sarjeant Gallery, Whanganui (2015); Korero Tuku Iho at Gus Fisher Gallery, Auckland (2016).

Elke Finkenauer (of New Zealand/German descent) is based in Auckland and Glasgow. She has an MFA from The Glasgow School of Art (2015) and a PgDipFA from Elam School of Fine Arts (2013). Her recent solo exhibitions include Saturday Safari, Glasgow Project Room (2017) and Approximately Bacon, The Old Hairdresser’s, Glasgow (2016). In 2016 Elke completed Transitional Line, a public commission for Auckland Council.

Date(s) - 04/05/2018 - 09/06/2018
All Day