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Sculptor grabs last-minute offer

Ten months was how long Gisborne’s Infinite Sun sculptor Paul Riding was told he would have to wait for a solo show at Waikato Museum’s ArtsPost Galleries. Then 10 minutes after his inquiry, a gallery staff member phoned back to say another artist had pulled out and a vacancy in the Margot Philips gallery space at the museum had come up.

Three months later Riding and partner Paula Denton packed his work and their kids into the car and headed for Hamilton.

Titled Fluidity Ink and Stone, Riding’s exhibition includes inked images on photographic paper and sculptures cast from liquid white marble.

“This is my first solo show. It was a nerve-wracking experience. I’ve been doing sculpture for 17 years and I’m now trying to break into original art as a breakaway from my usual work.”

To develop his skills he enrolled in a Learning Connexion advanced diploma in art and creativity course in which he was required to work on the horizontal plane.

“Everything you do has to be on the floor or a table. This was not about coming out with a fixed idea but a process. Through that I came up with this new technique. I discovered it by accident.”

Having discovered a unique technique for painting and printing with ink (that’s as much as he is willing to reveal about the technique), his show Fluidity Ink and Stone is an exploration of that process.

Mainly self-taught in drawing, painting, woodcarving and sculpture, Riding has worked in a range of styles, he says.

“I like this new technique because it is not a predicted outcome.”


NEW DIRECTION: Gisborne sculptor Paul Riding’s first solo show, called Fluidity Ink and Stone, has opened in Hamilton’s Margot Phillips Gallery.Picture supplied