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The Naked Truth

Figure studies, or more specifically the portrayal of nudes in various positions and situations are very much a feature of the art landscape in Auckland currently.&n ...

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Figure studies, or more specifically the portrayal of nudes in various positions and situations are very much a feature of the art landscape in Auckland currently.  A major exhibition titled “The body Laid Bare” is currently on show at the Auckland Art Gallery.  This is a show which should not be missed by art lovers as rarely do we see a collection of art masters of this calibre under one roof in New Zealand. A fine publication also accompanies the exhibition. None of the works are for sale of course but if this show wets your appetite for a figure study we have some fine examples of this genre of art on display opening today.

The artists featured in “The Naked Truth” include New Zealand painters well versed in figurative studies including Jan Nigro, Dame Louise Henderson, Rozi Demant, Viky Garden and Nigel Brown.

The Nigel Brown work “Whatever Love Whatever”, is an important work which was painted in 1986 to celebrate the passing of the Homosexual Law reform Bill in 1986.  Almost 30 years later in 2013, the Marriage Amendment Bill (legalising gay marriage) was passed.  New Zealand is a country which celebrates and enjoys freedom of speech and choice.  Nigel Brown is an artist who was at the forefront of promoting and protesting social issues from his Elam university days in the 1960’s.  This painting at 1870 mm long is a significant work depicting three couples separately embracing (Lesbian, Heterosexual and Homosexual).The main image is framed or surrounded by a painted elliptical band of 30 photographic style “everyday life” images in narrative form .A golden glowing sunrise silhouettes the elongated figures and cordyline trees, while a stylised Mt Albert volcanic cone (Owairaka) appears in the background.

This painting is an important record of early groundswell movements which highlighted contentious issues well ahead of most countries of which New Zealand can be rightly proud.

All the artists in this exhibition are or were leading exponents of figurative painting in New Zealand, both Jan Nigro and Louise Henderson working as art instructors for many years.  Price for drawings start at $750

“The Naked Truth” is on view from Friday 7th April till 29th April.

 

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