. . . for me feminist art is basically educative. It changes people, or that is what it aims to do. That is successful feminist art. (Alexis Hunter, 1982)
Setting alight high heels and shaping finger nails with a razor blade were some of the subjects of the photo narratives of Alexis Hunter (1948–2014), one of New Zealand’s most significant feminist artists. Born in Auckland and a graduate of the University of Auckland’s Elam School of Fine Arts, Hunter is known for these subversive and now prescient sequences, as well as her inverse take on the ‘male gaze’ and her fantastical mythological oils that explore female sexuality and creativity.
Described by activist and curator Lucy Lippard as a maker of ‘icons of fearlessness for women’, Hunter had established a decade-long career as a notable feminist artist in London when her solo exhibition Alexis Hunter: Fears/Dreams/Desires: A Survey Exhibition, 1976–1988 was held at the Auckland City Art Gallery in 1989. Curated by Alexa Johnston and Elizabeth Eastmond, the exhibition was one in a series held at the Gallery that sought to promote women artists and provide an alternative perspective.
- Curated by
- Catherine Hammond and Caroline McBride
- Mezzanine level display case