Pocket Histories

Modernism, a slippery art historical trajectory to describe, could most simply be understood as a path away from representation. As a philosophy, though, modernism could also be thought of as a committed desire to break with tradition in order to herald in new ideas and encourage individual freedom.

Pocket Histories brings together artists who are interested in both understandings. In this exhibition — developed in collaboration between artist and McCahon House alumnus Imogen Taylor and curator Ioana Gordon-Smith — artists sample pockets of modernism to reevaluate our understandings of ‘high’ or ‘good’ art, as well as alternative principles for living. Pulling upon various threads of modernist histories – from the influence of the decorative arts to utopian ideals – the works share not only an interest in geometry but also the potential of anachronism as a strategy for recalling alternative positions that are possible in the here and now. Artists include Vita Cochran, Ngatai Taepa, Imogen Taylor and Isobel Thom.

Image: Imogen Taylor (detail)

10 February – 13 May 2018

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