Hello – we’re glad to be back. We’re glad, too, that the country has started its recovery process and that real people are allowed to view real artwork in real galleries again.
Virtual art and on-screen browsing is great – and one of the clear messages from the Virtual Auckland Art Fair was that buying art online is easy, secure and effective. But nothing beats the real colour, the real texture and the real scale of a real exhibition in a real gallery.
The past couple of months have been stressful but also, for many of us, somewhat restorative. We’ve been forced to relax but at the same time we’ve managed to get a few things done that would normally slip to the bottom of the pile. Here at the gallery, one of the things Maddie Gifford and I did during lockdown (okay, mainly Maddie) was to reorganise the stockroom.
It was like looking through a box of old photographs: you’re doing your best to stay on task but you keep getting side-tracked and it ends up taking all day.
“Oh wow, remember this?”… “I forgot the colours were so intense”… “Why haven’t we shown this before?”… “It’s criminal these have been stuck out here for so long!”
As artworks got hauled out of racks and moved around walls and stacked in odd piles, we started to notice random combinations. Colours and shapes were matching (or clashing in a good way), subject matter was aligning (or colliding), and pairs of artists whose work you would never think of putting beside each other were actually looking fantastic.
It was serendipity. And it gave us the first glimmer of an unexpectedly joyful and uplifting opening exhibition: On with the Show.
Tim Melville Gallery
4 Winchester St, Grey Lynn, Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland