Making Spaces

This talk series hosted by Te Waka Tūhura Elam School of Fine Arts and Design, aims to make space for artists and art professionals to share their practice and research.

Credit: Sriwhana Spong, Tasseography of a Rat’s Nest (extended) (2018). Pump House Gallery, London (2018). Courtesy of the artist and Michael Lett Gallery. Photo: Damian Griffiths.
Credit: Sriwhana Spong, Tasseography of a Rat’s Nest (extended) (2018). Pump House Gallery, London (2018). Courtesy of the artist and Michael Lett Gallery. Photo: Damian Griffiths.

Making Spaces is a platform for artists and art professionals to reveal insights into their work and ways of working. It makes space for their voices on what they make, why and how.

In this lecture series, leading artists are invited to share their research, illuminating their practices and the contexts in which they operate professionally.

Find out about the lectures coming up and save your spot below.

Scirinz (a running sore): scripts of the body

Sriwhana Spong
Sriwhana Spong

Sriwhana Spong

Monday 10 October 2022, 8pm NZST

Format: Online (via Zoom)

In this talk, Sriwhana Spong will discuss encounters, chimes, and reorientations through recent and not-so-recent projects, having-seen-snakeThe painter-tailor, and two films completed as part of her doctorate at Elam School of Fine Arts in 2021, A hook but no fish, and Interior Castle (a blueprint).

Sriwhana Spong is an artist from Aotearoa New Zealand, living in London. Drawing on the particular and ecstatic practices of women mystics, Spong produces scripts of her body that document in various mediums the oscillations of distance and intimacy created by an approach toward another—most recently, a rat nesting outside her window; a newly discovered species of snake; a painting by her grandfather, the Balinese painter, I Gusti Made Rundu; and a twelfth-century Javanese poem. These encounters spark journeys where experiential knowledge, autobiography, fiction, and systematic research produce films, sculptures, performances, and reorientations.

See Sriwhana Spong’s work.

Community Harvest

FAFSWAG Arts Collective 2022
FAFSWAG Arts Collective 2022

Tanu Gago

Monday 3 October 2022, 5.30pm

Format: In-person, City Campus

This year, the FAFSWAG Arts Collective, an interdisciplinary Arts Collective of Queer Indigenous artists based in South Auckland, represented Aotearoa at Documenta Fifteen. Curated by Indonesian arts collective Ruangrupa, the curatorial framework for this year's Documenta Fifteen is based on the notion of LumbungLumbung is the Indonesian word for a collectively governed rice barn, where the gathered harvest is stored and shared for the community's common good. Under this premise, art collectives from the global south were asked to join a Lumbung process in which a series of cultural exchanges was facilitated over two years culminating in the presentation of Documenta.

In this talk, FAFSWAG artist Tanu Gago will speak to the collective's core values using their recent contributions to Documenta Fifteen quinquennial art festival. Entitled ALTERATION, the project presented three separate but spiritually related works, a moving image installation and a mixed media archival exhibition of the same name, and an AR sculptural experience entitled ATUA, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year. The works are produced both locally and within Kassel, Germany, spread across three main civic sites: Hübner Areal, Hessisches Landes Museum and Stadtmuseum Kassel.

Visit the FAFSWAG Arts Foundation website to learn more.

Paradise Camp

Yuki Kihara
Yuki Kihara

Yuki Kihara

Monday 22 August 2022, 5.30pm

Format: In-person, City Campus

In April 2022, the New Zealand pavilion unveiled artist Yuki Kihara’s critically acclaimed exhibition entitled Paradise Camp, curated by Natalie King, presented in the Arsenale as part of the 59th Venice Biennale.

Paradise Camp is an immersive installation comprised of 12 tableau photographs, a single-channel video and a Vārchive that explores small island ecologies, queer rights, intersectionality and decolonisation. The production involved over 100 people and most of it took place in the Independent State of Sāmoa, where Kihara has been living and working for the past 11 years.

In this talk, Kihara will present on Paradise Camp along with the global outreach program she initiated during the Venice Biennale, including the Firsts Solidarity Network and the Talanoa Forum – an online and in-person gathering presented in partnership with the New Institute for Environmental Humanities of the Ca ‘Foscari University of Venice, the University of Melbourne, the National Museum of World Cultures, The Netherlands and the Ministry of Pacific Peoples.

Visit the New Zealand at Venice website to experience Paradise Camp.

Yuki Kihara is an interdisciplinary artist whose work seeks to challenge dominant and singular historical narratives through art, dance and curatorial practice. Kihara became an Arts Foundation Laureate in 2020. Kihara is currently a research fellow at the National Museum of World Cultures in The Netherlands. Visit Yuki Kihara's website to learn more.

Creation Stories

Dr Karamia Müller and Simon Denny
Dr Karamia Müller and Simon Denny

Dr Karamia Müller and Simon Denny

Monday 8 August 2022, 5.30pm

Format: In-person, City Campus

In this talk, Karamia and Simon will present the research they have undertaken together into familial, cultural and technological flows, leading up to the Creation Stories  exhibition. Creation Stories connects the artists' family stories with histories of global exchange, cryptocurrencies, and intergenerational knowledge-sharing, within the New Zealand context and beyond. The exhibition is open across Gus Fisher Gallery and Michael Lett from Saturday 6 August. Visit the Creation Stories exhibition page to learn more.

Dr Karamia Müller is a lecturer at the School of Architecture and Planning. Her research focuses on the meaningful ‘indigenisation’ of design methodologies invested in building futures resistant to inequality.

Born in Auckland, Simon Denny studied at the Elam School of Fine Arts, University of Auckland, and Städelschule, Frankfurt am Main. Denny currently lives and works in Berlin. His work unpacks the social and political implications of the technology industry and the rise of social media, start-up culture, blockchains and cryptocurrencies, using a variety of media, including installation, sculpture, print and video. Denny has curated significant exhibitions about blockchain and art, such as Proof of Stake at Kunstverein in Hamburg (2021) and Proof of Work at Schinkel Pavillon, Berlin (2018).

Visit Simon Denny’s website