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Holding a Paintbrush


Was a project conceived by Benjamin Lignel and realised by 6 curatorial groups in Cagnes-sur-Mer, France at Espace Solidor.

Here is the official website.

Thank you to Creative New Zealand who helped me travel to this exhibition.

“I am a collector of raw evidence.
And sometimes it is a bit raw. But it is real. And I like reality. It doesn’t terrify me.” – Marti Friedlander

This is not a show about a specific place. Instead, it is a show about shared origins and a collective disquiet. Our understanding of this world is increasingly uneasy. One could argue that our restlessness circles back to living in a remote outpost. But as was mentioned earlier, this is not a show about a specific place.

New Zealand is only one half of the story. The other half of the story emerges from an intricate mapping of stars and a deep understanding of wind patterns and ocean currents. The migratory patterns of birds. We are all cartographers; our paths are constructed from shell and blood. We are made from bone and twine. Even the waves hand over the reins to the rhythm of language. How beautiful the light from the moon when it is filtered through the water! How singular and clearly understood our needs are now that we cannot clearly see!

There are people among us who risk everything in order to pursue their dreams. In 1769, the crew of the HMS Endeavour anchored in Tahiti and watched the transit of Venus across the sun. Shortly after, they headed to New Zealand and became a mythical bird, a floating island, another point lost in the story of our shared origin.

The night ends.  The mist evaporates.  We are still on the other side of the ocean.  There is more than one way we can be clearly distinguished.

The works are quiet, gently seductive and require some time in order to sense the underlying sediments. Still alone, but greater somehow. In Maōri tradition, the karanga is the ceremonial call used to describe the reasons behind a meeting of two groups.  One atom bumps into another atom and just like that another, only slightly semi-related atom is created.

Works in this proposal feature but are not limited to: Debbie Adamson, Vanessa Arthur, Jane Dodd, Sione Monu, Jasmine Te Hira, Raewyn Walsh, and Selina Woulfe.

Kristin D’Agostino & Craig Foltz

The Curator

Trained as a jeweller, Kristin d’Agostino’s NZ/USA inclination toward project based work inspired endeavours beyond the bench such the Brooch of the Month Club and the Overview newsletter (produced by the Jewellers Guild of Greater Sandringham). She sees curating as a natural extension of this mode of working. She was participant in Schmuck 2011, the Handshake mentorship project, and currently serves as a board member at Objectspace and as the Art Jewellery Forum ambassador for NZ.

The Artists

Vanessa Arthur NZ is a jeweller based in Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand whose work often records moments in time as an excavation of everyday within the streetscape.  Vanessa completed a Bachelor of Applied arts at Whitireia New Zealand in 2011. Upon graduating she was awarded the 2011 Fingers Graduate Award and was a member of Handshake II project.

After a successful career as a bassist for the band, the Abel Tasmans, Jane Dodd NZstudied jewellery at UNITEC in Auckland, NZ.  Dodd spent the next fifteen years as a member of an all-female jewellery collective, workshop6 before returning to her hometown of Dunedin. Rococo Revolution, her latest works are displays of discomfort, and has shown at Objectspace, Auckland (2014), Velvet da Vinci, San Francisco (2015) and Schmuck(2017).

Sione Monu TO is a Tongan artist living in Auckland, NZ.  He uses instagram (visit @sione93) as an art tool, to create artworks that utilise the platform as a way of re-indigenising space and creating accessibility for his community to engage with the works.  Monu is working on a solo show with Objectspace, opening late 2017.

Jasmine Te Hira NZ is a jeweller and multimedia artist living in Auckland, NZ and her whakapapa (genealogy) connects her to the Māori iwis (tribes) Te Rarawa and Ngapuhi, the Cook Islands and Devon, England. Her work explores her heritage and the successes and challenges her ancestors have faced. Te Hira attended UNITEC Institute of Technology – Te Whare Wananga o Wairaka and was awarded a 5-month Creative New Zealand Pasifika Internship with partnering organisations Toi O Tāmaki Auckland Art Gallery and Ngā Taonga Sound and Vision.

Raewyn Walsh NZ is a jeweller based in Auckland, NZ.  She graduated with a Bachelor of Design (Honours) from UNITEC Institute of Technology – Te Whare Wananga o Wairaka in 2009 and has been a participant in the Handshake programme.  Raewyn is a founding member of the Jewellers Guild of Greater Sandringham, a grassroots collective that produces the Overview newsletter and has been active in international content provider’s discussions.

Selina Woulfe’s NZ practice explores the body and its politics through radical concepts whilst utilizing traditional metalsmithing techniques. Woulfe has work held in The James Wallace Arts Trust Collection.  She was included in the publications, Scope Art Journal:Border Crossings #7 and On Jewellery: A Compendium of International Contemporary Art Jewellery, by Dutch art historian Liesbeth den Besten. 

I like reality it doesn't terrify me: Welcome
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