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Pop-up Hundertwasser exhibition opens in Whangarei Art Museum

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

A pop-up exhibition at the Whangārei Art Museum aims to give people a glimpse behind the scenes of the construction site of the Hundertwasser Art Centre with Wairau Maori Art Gallery.

The exhibition features a collection of 25 intimate photographs of the construction process so far and those working on the build, taken by official project photographer Sue Shepherd. Also on display is a new work-in-progress 3D model of the building, and a cross section sample of steelwork from the site which demonstrates the building’s remarkable complexity.

Shepherd says the images have been selected from several thousand she has taken to provide a chronological sequence of the project, as it has risen from the ground.

While many of the construction team initially took some convincing to pose for photographs, Shepherd said she is now considered ‘part of the team’.

"I’m able to work on site without the guys feeling self-conscious anymore, and as a result have been able to get some amazing images," said Shepherd.

"I discovered that many of them have never actually had their photo taken before. They all tell each other, ‘just do as Sue tells you’ now so I think I must be doing something right" she said.

Shepherd said the exhibition will give people an opportunity to see behind the scenes of the construction process.

"The skill of the work that has gone into this building is quite remarkable. People have no idea just how intricate the steelwork is, and because it all gets encased in concrete, documenting it through photographs is the only way they’ll ever get to see it," she said.

Shepherd aims to collate the best of her photographs into a book once construction is complete. One of her images has already been selected to go into the New Zealand Camera Book 2019.

The pop-up exhibition opens on Saturday 31 August at the Whangārei Art Museum, Dent Street, Town Basin. It will run for one month at the Museum, which is open 10am - 4pm 7 days a week.

The Hundertwasser Art Centre with Wairau Māori Art Gallery is scheduled for completion early 2021.

About Whangārei Art Museum

The Whangārei Art Museum (WAM)Te Manawa Toi is the public art gallery of the Whangārei District, and custodians of its art collection and public art works. The art museum is the venue for touring and internally curated exhibitions - designed to showcase the full diversity of creative art practice in Northland, New Zealand and beyond. WAM is also the governing body of the under-construction Hundertwasser Art Center with Wairau Māori Art Gallery.

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