Craft was a one-night fashion and arts event, showcasing the summer
collections of High Street shops Tango and Novak, and presenting
the work of three Christchurch video artists whose work explored
connections and crossovers between fashion, art, design, and contemporary
culture. These commissioned projects showcased the work of contemporary
and experimental local artists, whose video, projected large scale
across three walls, played at intervals throughout the night, in
between catwalk displays of the summer collections of Tango and
For the two weeks following Craft, the three video works were placed
in the windows of both Novak and Tango, as well as fellow High Street
business, Galaxy Records. This placement was highly visible, and
continued the discussion between art, commerce and fashion that
the works had generated at the Craft event.
Waroonwan Thongvanit is a Thai artist currently based in Christchurch,
infused with the confessional ethos of reality TV shows such as
Big Brother and Survivor, her video installations straddle a seamless
line between truth and fabrication.
True Confessions featured the artist in a variety of mock confessional
video works, her image in close-up. Studied, yet perfectly frank,
in one video the artist pours out her innermost thoughts on a breakup,
in another the camera watches small children playing in a pool -
yet we are simultaneously always aware of the precise framing of
the camera and the seductive nature of the images presented.
Artist Hannah Beehre and designer Aaron Beehre have worked together
on a number of projects, including playing in the group Pine, and
exhibiting paintings and sculptures at the City Gallery, Wellington,
and the Govett Brewster Gallery, New Plymouth. Playful yet elegant,
their artistic practice plays on the connections between art and
commerce, fashion and design,
Sourcing images directly from contemporary design and fashion -
logos, posters, cute Manga style creatures - their work appears
light, fresh and ephemeral, designed to date quickly, as market
driven and prone to temporal readings as the street art it apes.
Poignant and seductive, featured a slow moving camera panning across
images of a trendy New York cityscape, contrasted with scenes from
a run down carpark in Croatia. As the camera scans closer to its
subjects, one begins to realize that every image has been infiltrated
with the artists distinctive logos and typeface, inserted into slogans
and graffiti admidst billboards and walls. Placed in the front window
of Galaxy Records, in lower High Street, this work aped the sleek
look of a music video at first glance.
Artist Rudolf Boelee and fashion designer Robyn Voyce work together
under the label Op Shop, a project which consists as both a label,
and a temporary shop/gallery held regularly at their home. Fusing
a love for retro fashion and design with a concern for critically
charged social commentary, Op Shop defy the saying less is
more, merging old and new, high art and low art into a diverse
blend of media, from clothing to installation to video.
Working with local designer Jayne Joyce, this work gave a quirky,
humorous look at their life and art practices, showing the artists
at home in their studio environment, even their dog got a look in!
Endearing, intriguing, and engaging, this fly on the wall glimpse
of an artists life showed a blurring between life and art,
home and work, production and concept.
Craft was kindly supported by the Community Trust