Wednesday 15 July 2015
Displaying eclectic contemporary jewellery from makers across the country, free exhibition Wunderrūma: New Zealand Jewellery opens this Saturday 18 July at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki.
To celebrate the opening, encounters with jewellers, discussions with experts and a panel conversation with the exhibition’s co-curators Karl Fritsch and Warwick Freeman will make for a bumper weekend of free events at the Gallery.
On Saturday 18 July, from 12pm to 3pm, jeweller Matthew McIntyre will work in the Gallery demonstrating techniques and discussing contemporary jewellery with visitors.
On Sunday 19 July at 1pm, the exhibition’s co-curators will lead a tour of Wunderrūma with The Dowse Art Museum Director Courtney Johnston.
At 3pm on Sunday, fashion historian Doris De Pont and Sydney based independent art writer, curator and broadcaster Julie Ewington will hold a discussion about jewellery and its place in fashion and art.
And from 12pm to 3pm, artist-jewellers Sharon Fitness and Neke Moa will demonstrate to Gallery visitors how they create jewellery.
Auckland Art Gallery Director Rhana Devenport says Wunderrūma demonstrates the Gallery’s commitment to taking part in innovative collaborations and “to opening the collection to new, remarkable interpretations”.
“We gave Warwick and Karl unfettered access to the Gallery’s collection to curate works to sit alongside the original exhibition. It is the first time the Gallery has allowed jewellers such access.”
“The works from our collection and Wunderrūma come together to produce a dynamic, unexpected and fascinating exhibition which we’re immensely proud to have at Auckland Art Gallery,” she says.
Comprising the largest collection of contemporary New Zealand jewellery, with more than 75 artists represented, Wunderrūma also includes Māori taonga (treasure) and Pacific and historical jewellery.
Wunderrūma binds the German word wunder (wonder) with the Māori word rūma (room). The title suggests Wunderkammer, or a cabinet of curiosities.
The show was developed and toured by The Dowse Art Museum in Lower Hutt and supported by Te Papa Tongarewa.
About the curators:
Karl Fritsch (born in Sonthofen, Germany) studied at the Goldsmiths' College in Pforzheimin, and then at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich. He now resides in Wellington and is one of New Zealand’s most recognised contemporary Jewellers.
Warwick Freeman (born in Nelson, New Zealand) is largely self-taught and began making jewellery in Perth, Australia. After returning to New Zealand he became a partner in the highly successful jewellery co-operative Fingers. Following this he has become recognised as a leader in contemporary jewellery practice in Aotearoa.