29 April 2017 - 9 July 2017
Eve Armstrong speaks in the language of the cast-off, interested in the value, currency and sculptural possibilities of materials found and discarded. Armstrong, who is based in Wellington, graduated from Elam School of Fine Arts in 2003. She has previously described her approach as a kind of ‘accidental formalism,’ using materials and processes to first establish and then define her finished works. An urban-dweller, Armstrong has often turned to the materials of the city as the starting point for her work – zeroing in on surplus, discarded or salvaged materials that can trace patterns of use, consumption and trade. Her motivation lies in the adaptive potential of these materials readily to hand, and the opportunity they present to make work that reflects the rhythms, functions and interactions of a particular place or time.
In Dunedin as part of the Gallery’s Visiting Artist Programme, Armstrong has been exploring the material evidence of an urban environment in flux – of the city as a site constantly being made and re-made. Sensitive to the Dunedin Public Art Gallery’s former use as a Department Store, Armstrong uses material and form to explore some of the implicit hierarchies of advertising, display and consumption. Her selections of materials reflect her observations and experiences of Dunedin, from its building sites to second-hand traders to convenience stores. Both lines of enquiry explore the city as a dynamic environment, constantly renegotiating both its spaces and social functions.
A Dunedin Public Art Gallery Visiting Artist Project, supported by Creative New Zealand and project partner, Dunedin School of Art.