Innovative exhibition awarded Museum medal

01 June 2017
Top: Still from Harvey's video installation. Below: Public performance at Te Tuhi.

An exhibition responding to global and social concerns created in collaboration with Dr Mark Harvey, from the University of Auckland, has won a 2017 New Zealand Museum Award.

Held at Te Tuhi Centre for the Arts in Pakuranga, Share/Cheat/Unite curated by Bruce Phillips won the Exhibition Excellence Award for Art.

Harvey’s own work featured a video installation and live public participatory performance, that was also included as part of Art Dego in association with the Auckland Art Gallery.

Commissioned by Te Tuhi, Harvey’s instructional video and series of public interventions called Turquoisation: For the coming storm, saw thousands of people interact with the work.

A senior lecturer at the Dance Studies Programme in the Faculty of Creative Arts and Industries, Dr Harvey is a performance artist working with choreography. His practices are conceptually driven and concern notions of minimal endurance with constructions of idiocy, seriousness and deadpan humour, drawing from his visual arts and contemporary dance influences.

Turquoisation: For the coming storm
 was a group choreographic performance referencing the herd mentality of social norms. People in turquoise clothes carried out group actions that played with notions of idiocy and group affiliation and the politics of following others. Reference points included Stanley Milligram’s unethical experiments, cults, political movements, the threats of climate change and societal collapse (due to economic recessions), and post-apocolistic science fiction films.  

In announcing the winner, the judges described Share/Cheat/Unite as ‘an example of the gallery being real innovators and risk takers’.

“It was an honour to be part of this exhibition with its deeply engaging exploration around the human condition and our deep desires to affiliate. My work focussed around questions of what can it take for people to follow political leaders and movements and why should we blindly trust them in the ways that we do? It was the result of two years of research,” says Dr Harvey.

The judges citation said that the show was ‘at the leading edge of curatorial practice and exhibition making within Aotearoa and internationally.’

To find out more about Share/Cheat/Unite visit

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