The Homely II

The Homely II

Gavin Hipkins

Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery
420 Titirangi Road, Titirangi, Auckland

23 February - 2 June 2019

Opening event 4pm, Saturday, 2 March

Read the EyeContact review by John Hurrell

Te Uru in Titirangi is pleased to present The Homely II—a frieze of eighty photos by local artist Gavin Hipkins, taken on an amateur film camera during travels in New Zealand and the United Kingdom between 2001 and 2017. Open from Saturday 23 February, The Homely II is a sequel to Hipkins’ other eighty-photo frieze The Homely, shot in New Zealand and Australia.

For the follow-up, Hipkins visited historic tourist spots and museums as well as humble everyday locations. In the UK, his itinerary took in iconic landscapes, such as the Lake District and Scotland’s national parks, and sites associated with the industrial revolution, including New Lanark and Iron Bridge. From New Zealand, there’s the Moeraki boulders, geothermal activity in Rotorua, and displays from settler museums. Throughout, images allude to colonial history, Victorian modernity, landscape representation traditions, and ideals of domesticity and family.

As art critic Mark Amery observes, the exhibition presents “the eerie, funny space of feeling culturally inbetween as a Pākehā tourist. An unsettled meditation on what it means to be a colonial, with images, abutted together in punk surrealist formation, where our usual mapping coordinates are lost. What is England and what is New Zealand becomes blurred.”

In conjunction with Te Uru’s presentation of The Homely II, Hipkins will premiere The Valley (2019), a new video that further explores themes of nationalism against the moors of Devon, in southwest England. The film considers imaginary communities and ideas of belonging at a time when parochialism and nationalism are prevail globally.

A Titirangi resident, Gavin Hipkins has been described as a ‘tourist of photography’ for the way he navigates the medium’s history, modes, manners, and mechanics. Core concerns link his works, including myths of national identity, colonisation, and modernity, architecture as subject and symbol, and how ideologies shape the world.

Gavin Hipkins: The Homely II is toured by City Gallery Wellington.

Gavin Hipkins,  Clandon (Hinemihi) , 2015

Gavin Hipkins, Clandon (Hinemihi), 2015

Gavin Hipkins,  Crystal Palace (Park) , 2015

Gavin Hipkins, Crystal Palace (Park), 2015

Gavin Hipkins, The Homely II (detail)

Gavin Hipkins, The Homely II (detail)