Dane Mitchell


Artwork Detail

The Barricades started out as an archive of 300 images collected by the artist of civilian-built street barricades, which he assembled into artist books. His two-year research project resulted in an archive that becomes the central axis for the project. Together the elements of this project reference the history of protest in New Zealand, such as the Springbok street protests, locating it in a larger international and historical context. Similarly, raids by NZ police on various groups under the Terrorism Suppression Act 2002 provide a backdrop for this reflection on revolutionary tactics.

The project places a particular accent on improvisation. The flagpole is adapted from the shaft of a shovel, the shields are cut directly from the gallery walls. The Barricades explores strategies of dissent and self-organising collectives across varied outcomes: a flag, some ad-hoc shields, an overturned wheelbarrow and a suite of six delicate sketches of improvised street barricades.

“These constructions can also be viewed as an assault on architecture… Here we are not dealing with architecture to enter, but architecture as obstacle, as defence, as deterrent. These barricades are a reclamation of space.” – Artist’s statement.

“…these hastily assembled barricades are ruptures in this obsession with policing of social boundaries through architectural means.” – Artist’s statement.

Dane Mitchell
Production date
found objects (wheelbarrow and shovel), plaster, clay, textiles, wood, metal, paper, portable CD player, portable speaker system and audio
400 x 95 x 85 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 2010
Accession no
Copying restrictions apply
New Zealand Art
Display status
Not on display

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