What was the first piece of art that really mattered to you?
Mary Heilmann’s 1983 painting Rosebud – maybe not the first piece that mattered, but the one that landed me in abstraction and in California.
What images are pinned to your studio wall?
At the moment; fishnet stockings, viral shapes, Impressionist landscapes, all the Odilon Redon I can absorb, bodies and space in Mannerist painting, the freshness of Moira Dryer’s brief oeuvre, theatrical costumes and sets by painters such as Florine Stettheimer for Virgil Thompson and Gertrude Stein’s opera Four Saints Three Acts, and Pablo Picasso for Sergei Diaghilev and Erik Satie’s ballet Parade.
Who or what is your ideal studio buddy?
My dog Kahu has been a steady studio buddy for the last couple of years, and at my ArtCenter studio: my friend Nicholas Smith. Our need for coffee, gossip, deep chats, and silence are very in sync. His work is the kind I want to be around all the time, and to rub off on me.
What are you reading?
The Bruce Hainley edition of Pep Talk; Lee Lozano: Dropout Piece by Sarah Lehrer-Graiwer; Audre Lorde’s Uses of the Erotic: the Erotic as Power; Jutta Koether’s F., and Inland by Téa Obreht.
What should change?
Tertiary institutes in Aotearoa need to stop pillaging the arts and humanities of their libraries, staff, space, and resources in favour of STEM subjects.
A summer of thesis writing at the kitchen table, and making the most of having kitchen appliances on hand for new material experimentation in my studio-science lab, such as gelatin print making and wax resists. I’ll be painting in the backyard as I work towards a show at Mossman in Wellington in August.