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EAST 2020 a snapshot of Hawke's Bay artists' creativity

Kay Bazzard Novel Coronavirus Lifestyle 2020 1

It’s been months in preparation, and this Friday Hawke’s Bay’s flagship biennial exhibition, EAST 2020, opens to the general public.

This year’s collection includes photography, painting, ceramics, mixed media and sculpture, created by newcomers to the event alongside more established and recognised names.

The entire exhibition is on display at Hastings City Art Gallery – Te Whare Toi o Heretaunga, and the list of well-known names includes the likes of David Trubridge, Jo Blogg, Jane Gray, John Eaden, Kathy Boyle, Wellesley Binding, Richard Brimer, Patrick Tyman and many others.

Exhibiting alongside the established are a group of up and coming creatives who are really starting to make a splash in the local art scene, and are demanding notice every time they make an offering.

Putaanga Waitoa, Mauricio Benega and Dali Susanto are three such artists featured.

Gallery curator Clayton Gibson said putting EAST together had given him a valuable opportunity to visit artists in their studios.

“What I was met with was a diverse and supportive group of inspired and passionate creatives all working to enhance their practice, and explore current issues in their work.

“What the artists do have in common in this exhibition is that they are artists of this place and time. Their work reflects their inner relationship with their immediate environment, these hills, these mountains these rivers, this urban and social environs and this ocean.”

He said the upheaval of COVID-19 was a common thread in the works reflecting the challenges of the pandemic, as well as concern and aspiration for the community’s future.

“Our mission with this exhibition is to bring an engaging, enriching and inspirational contemporary art experience to our community.

“We are pleased to present this snapshot of Hawke’s Bay’s creativity; a visual diary recording some of the region’s most exciting artwork from 2020.”

Friday’s (November 20) free opening event at the gallery runs from 5.30pm to 8pm.

To complement the exhibition, some of the artists will also be conducting free floor talks at the gallery to discuss their works and practice.

No bookings are required, and the first of these is being held on Saturday, November 21, at 11am – featuring David Trubridge, Susan Mabin and Wellesley Binding.

EAST 2020 will run until February 28, 2021.

For more information and to discover what else is on at Hastings City Art Gallery – Te Whare Toi o Heretaunga go to the website www.hastingscityartgallery.co.nz.

Photo: Sculpture by Kay Bazzard, titled Novel Coronavirus Lifestyle.

17 November 2020

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