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Intrepid Tuesday - 2010

Waiheke based artist Joanna Upperton’s whimsical paintings draw on the journey of her life as a full time artist for her latest solo exhibition "Intrepid Tuesday" ...

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Waiheke based artist Joanna Upperton’s whimsical paintings draw on the journey of her life as a full time artist for her latest solo exhibition “Intrepid Tuesday” at the Warwick Henderson Gallery. Flying buses and ships, hot air balloons and penny farthing bicycles reveal a focus on travel, leaving the past behind and moving forward. The paintings are frequently set in narrow urban streets with elaborate buildings, lamps, fences, roses and awnings, depicting the artist herself going about every day tasks in an extraordinary way, each of the works reflect a vivid imagination and fun-loving personality.

“A Rosie Risk” depicts Upperton riding a penny farthing bicycle walking an alligator as a pet. The alligator she describes as a metaphor for the risks involved in remaining a full time artist, the lavender bow that holds it representative of her overcoming the fear of this risk. Oversized roses growing above and through the fence remind us to make time to ‘smell the roses.’ Another painting “Time Will Tell” shows the artist “…away with the fairies”, sitting at a bus stop with a fish bowl, happily oblivious to the flapping fish on the ground as she waits for the flying bus. In her possession only one small ornate suitcase and the one remaining fish. A hot air balloon in “Cutting Loose” reveals the artist with oversized scissors about to cut the cords and fly off “…cutting loose from the past, people, in order to move forward and create new beginnings.” An elaborate ruin of a building towering over will not get in the way of this determined balloonist.

These playful works capture the determination and imagination of this young painter as she sets about her journey as an artist.

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