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Nevermind the Apolcalypse

Auckland based artist Teresa HR Lane will be in Gisborne for the opening of her second solo show Nevermind the Apocalypse at Paul Nache gallery tomorrow.

Nevermind the Apocalypse is an installation of new collaged and animated creations. Lane uses prints of photographs of the sky as the base of her collages.

“I take photos of the sky every single day from my balcony in Grey Lynn.

“I have an unlimited sky view from the Sky Tower all the way around to the Waitakeres and I’m on the ridge so I’m looking straight into the clouds — so it’s a slightly different perspective from looking straight up.”

She shoots them on an iphone and then prints them on watercolour paper.

“The blue sky is the endless possibilities and I love the colours of them — the complexity of the colours,” she says.

“Every day every single photo is different. I’ll do some quite close-up, some will be further away but essentially I love them as a backdrop of colour.

“The concept of the never-ending nature of the sky — it’s the idea of hope.”

Her art messes with gender stereotypes — in one work (pictured above) a male nude is adorned with a woman’s blonde hair, a female breast, a rose and a cross.

“The concept of gender is completely fabricated and it’s fabricated by adornment.

“Our sexuality is a very defined specific thing — that’s our biological makeup but gender is constructed and the politics of how we behave and how we dress and how we perceive each other is completely man-made.”

There’s a playfulness to her work and humour.

“Come to my show with a good sense of humour — it’s important to me for my viewer to come and to feel comfortable and most welcome to laugh.

That gives me great joy.”

After recently graduating with a Master of Fine Arts from the Elam School of Fine Arts at the University of Auckland, Lane presents us with a visual narrative as a real time reference to her living experiences. She is an active participant, but also plays the role of the observer, documenting the human form, celebrating the ordinary, and recognising the humorous and often perverse ways we interact with others.

A finalist in last year’s prestigious Wallace Arts Awards, her animation called Know Your Meat has just returned after travelling around the country with the other finalists. The animation has been purchased for the permanent Wallace Arts Trust Collection in Pah Homestead, Auckland. She is producer, director, art-director and cameraman of all the animations. Using very old technology of stop motion animation she will take a shot, move it, take a shot and so on.

“Then I’ll take my 500 photos and drop them into photoshop and it becomes an animated image.”

Describing them as an active collage they are 20, 30 and 40 seconds long.

“Essentially they are the moving dialogue of static images.”

Lane recently had a fellow artist — a male — tell her he found the images confronting.

“He said ‘oh God I love that — I feel so confronted and challenged in my masculinity by what you’ve just done’.”

She has been called a staunch feminist and believes in equality between the sexes.

“I’m a complete and utter idealist and I believe in equality. I’m realistic — I don’t think it exists but I want it to exist.

My art has become about trying to create this slightly playful and incredibly perverse space.

“I’d like men to become more feminine because I grew up in a world where I could be more masculine. I was a tomboy and grew up on a farm — I got to wear jeans. I’d like men to be able to wear dresses and have long hair — maybe we’d have a more balanced world if men were given the opportunity to be more feminine and not to be accused of being ‘gay’ because they painted their toenails pink as if there is some bad stigma associated with it,” she said.

“We live in a world of adversity and in an apocalyptic world — a world where we have a certain level of despair.

“We need hope to combat despair and hand in hand with hope you have to have laughter and humour to keep it in perspective.”

DON’T CROSS ME (2018) “There is no pink in Mother’s wardrobe, nor did my Grandmother wear pink, only black, doing exactly what is expected of a Greek widow. Only Father wears pink, flowery frocks, slips, pant suits, shiny kitten heels, gloves, velvet bows, satin ribbons and pearly pink nail polish daily.”“I could never wear pink, but in my narration I like to position my pink self firmly atop the mountain, like the goddess I am, grounded to the centre of this phallocentric ambivalent apocalyptic world. My status is elevated and precariously adorned with flamboyant shimmery pink manliness, and I am empowered by the illusion of my own masculinity.” — Teresa HR LanePicture supplied