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Brilliant new exhibition lights up Christchurch Art Gallery

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Installation view of Reuben Paterson's Te Pūtahitanga ō Rehua 2005. DVD. Collection of Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū, purchased 2009

A dazzling new exhibition will transform Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū this month.

Wheriko - Brilliant! features light-based works by artists from around the world and explores the many roles light can play in the making and experiencing of art.

"In te reo Māori, ‘wheriko’ can mean to sparkle, flash or glisten," says curator Felicity Milburn. "It can also describe something dazzlingly beautiful or brilliant."

"This exhibition features works where artists play with shadows, throw glittering shards of colour and transform the everyday into the extraordinary."

Combining digital artworks with sculptures, photographs, videos and more, this exhibition promises a fun, family-friendly contemporary art experience for all ages.

Viewers are invited to step inside a fully immersive light environment and discover new ways to experience light as an art form in this dazzling collection of light-based works.

Eye-catching exhibits include a robotic light specially programmed by artist Daniel von Sturmer and a kaleidoscopic digital landscape by Reuben Paterson, inspired by Māori mythology connected with water, cleansing, transformation and stars.

The exhibition also includes a very special sculpture by US-based artist Anila Quayyum Agha.

Born in Lahore, Pakistan, as a child Agha had always wanted to see inside the most sacred rooms of the mosques that only boys and men were allowed to enter.

Her work, Shimmering Mirage, combines light and shadow to create an immersive space to welcome all visitors and celebrates Islamic and Western cultures co-existing in harmony. The presentation of Agha’s work has been supported by the Asia New Zealand Foundation.

To celebrate the exhibition opening, the Gallery will host an After Dark party on 24 May with food trucks, a pop-up bar, live bands and DJs. The party kicks off at 7:30pm and entry is free.

Wheriko - Brilliant! is on display at Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū from May 17 2019 to 16 February 2020. Entry is free.

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