Clouds, Auckland

Kate Newby
Incredible Feeling

Incredible Feeling is both a survey of recent work and an artist’s book. The publication features essays by Chris Kraus, Tahi Moore and Sarah Hopkinson, and is punctuated with four new photographic essays; ‘Portraits’, ‘Sidewalks and Puddles’, ‘Rocks’ and ‘Skim Stones’.

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Michael Stevenson & Jan Verwoert
Animal Spirits: Fables in the Parlance of Our Times

In March 2008 the artist Michael Stevenson self-published a slender document entitled Fables to accompany his project Lender of Last Resort at the Kröller-Müller Museum in the Netherlands. It was a series of some nine texts in fable form, and each suggested further allegorical readings on a tableau the artist assembled in the museum. All were co-written by Stevenson and the art critic Jan Verwoert. The project itself was developed around the notion of the bilateral loan contract, both in the financial sense, but also regarding the museological. A loan is perhaps best defined as an inter-temporal transfer of value through time. It is probably the oldest financial instrument, dating at least from the birth of writing. Some of the first ever written documents describe loans, bad loans in fact (default being the real reason the record has remained). The tableau itself was constructed from objects related to the founding of the museum, a process that unfolded in and among the banking crisis of 1924. The publication was only available in the space itself and has long since been out of print.

Animal Spirits: Fables in the Parlance of Our Times is an artist’s book by Michael Stevenson and Jan Verwoert which expands upon the themes of this earlier document and re-examines them more specifically in the light of our current times. It is based on a collaborative process, a process that resembles a game. Stevenson and Verwoert developed a working method in which plot structure remained open, a kind of partial exquisite corpse, i.e. text fragments passed back and forth without prior discussion as to any through line. These stories were co-illustrated in a similar way by the artist and Margaret Stevenson, his mother—the moral guide; the results were then made into a publication by Christoph Keller. A page at the end of the book announces the contributors thus: artist, mother, critic, and spirit maker.

The stories themselves take classic fable form and so most are concerned with arrangements between two parties or what could be called informal bilateral contracts. Galvanized and translated within parallel realities they produce a world in which the Beginning of the World has a voice and dares to question the might of the Bull. A world where the Shareholder sips wine at the dinner table with the Jackal, and the Lion, in a crisis, calls on his Hairdresser for council in matters of sovereign security. “Haircuts … Severe haircuts!”

Text by Michael Stevenson and Jan Verwoert
Illustrations by Michael Stevenson and Margaret Stevenson

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Louise Menzies
Pursuit of an Ideal

This artist’s book considers modern, scientistic attitudes to wellbeing through the example of the little known New Zealand-based mid-twentieth-century movement, the School of Radiant Living. Founded by English psychologist Herbert Sutcliffe in the 1930s and active until the early 1980s, the School taught a holistic philosophy of spirituality and physical health. A response to archival material produced by the School, and now held by the J.C. Beaglehole Room at Victoria University Library, Wellington, Pursuit of an Ideal includes a wealth of ephemera in reproduction.

Characteristically, Menzies abstracts from this highly specific reference in order to consider its possible relations to our current situation. The publication imaginatively reconfigures the materials it responds to, collapsing document and invention. In this way, it draws out broader themes; tensions between the individual and the collective, the practical and the ideal, and the persistence of desire in nostalgia and utopian visions.

This publication exists within a larger body of work that includes the installations “Move Your Arms in Circles”, “Letters to Students of the Radiant Life”, and a short film “Peloha” that shows a performance of exercises adapted from the School’s “Physical Culture” manual and that was filmed at the house of the same name (a contraction of “peace, love and harmony”) in Havelock North, the international headquarters of the School. It includes a poster insert and pamphlet featuring a text by Anna Sanderson which was first presented with these earlier iterations of this exploration of Radiant Living’s modernist vision.

Text by Anna Sanderson

Published by Clouds

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Daniel Malone
Black Market Next To My Name

Daniel Malone is one of New Zealand’s most enigmatic and risk-taking artists. He is best known for context-specific performances and installations that weave together multiple threads to form playful and often perverse narratives about the historical, social and cultural identity of his subject matter.

Black Market Next To My Name is one of Malone’s most significant works to date. Originally show at Gambia Castle in 2007, the work involved all of the artist’s worldly goods, and the ridding of them.

The new publication presents documentation of the 2007 installation alongside a conversation between the artist and Los-Angeles based curator Liv Barrett. This dialogue took place shortly after Malone’s show Epicurios for an Other CV or, The Geophagy of Europe & its Autochthonous Peoples or, A Communist Kiosk in a Common Market opened at Hopkinson Cundy in February 2012, and just before Black Market Next To My Name was reconfigured at the Auckland Art Gallery for Made Active: The Chartwell Show (from 14 April – 15 July 2012).

Black Market Next To My Name is the first of a series of publications addressing Malone’s work, with additional volumes due to be released later in 2012. The series will sample and survey some seventeen years of practice, include a wealth of visual material from the artist’s extensive archive of documentation, and feature major new essays by New Zealand and international writers.

This publication was supported by the Chartwell Trust.

Text by Liv Barrett and Daniel Malone

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