CJ (Arthur)

Happy Hour or Profile Tile or Acapulco

Happy Hour or Profile Tile or Acapulco by CJ

Artwork Detail

A compelling yet elusive figure, this artist uses multiple identities, both singular and collective (Blanche Readymade, L. Budd, Popular Productions, Marlene Cubewell, Mythic Investments), multiple alternative titles for works (see above), and multiple media (photo-collages, installations, events, sculpture, paintings, books). Here, using layered fragments of text and images, mostly from the women's sections of 1930s newspapers, C. J. (Arthur) - now approaching twenty years on the Shore? - constructs new, jumbled and faintly sinister pages. Scattered across a brightly tiled surface - a kitchen floor? - they evoke memories of domestic debris, of newspaper spread around to catch splashes and spills when bottling fruit, or cooking for a crowd. And these pages have been thoroughly spilled on. Encased in dribbly, sticky-looking yellow resin, their messages are half-obscured but still hectoring in tone. By exposing to ridicule the never-ending litany of 'advice' offered to women through popular media, they question its authority and begin to undermine its power. Among the clippings, alongside images of table-napkin folding and cake decorating, and texts announcing 'Surprises with Lemon Delight', 'Picture Lesson No. 8', and 'Sportsman's Sandwiches', a trade secret of C. J. (Arthur) Craig and Sons is revealed: 'This shows how a "picture" can be made from commonplace material with a little artistry and imagination'. (from The Guide, 2001)

Happy Hour or Profile Tile or Acapulco
Production date
photocopies, floor tiles, epoxy resin and fibreglass cloth on vinyl wallpaper
1615 x 1670 mm
Credit line
Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, purchased 1989
Accession no
Copying restrictions apply
New Zealand Art
Display status
Not on display

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