Ambiguous Topographies | 28 August - 21 September 2013
Exquisite enough in themselves, it is once the viewer becomes cognisant of the materials employed that the response can only be one of astonishment. Peter Dornauf, eyecontactsite
Hot on the heels of Peter Trevelyan's success at the Auckland Art Fair, where 'wow' was certainly the dominant reaction, we are delighted to present Ambiguous Topographies - Peter's first solo exhibition in the gallery.
His sculptures are constructed, 'drawn', using the most fundamental tools of art - graphite pencil lead, and at times paper. The artist has become renowned, though an impressive history of public gallery exhibitions, for elegant, refined works that speak to the world's structures and to fragility. They have been variously described as having a "formidable presence", prioritising "subtlety over spectacle" and being "slow burning yet altogether entrancing".
Curator Abby Cunnane has asked, why go to such meticulous lengths to sustain structural integrity if you are going to build in a material as fragile as pencil lead? "The answer", she says, "can only be for the entertainment of courting the impossibility of imagined structures, of tiptoeing as close to the brink of possibility as the material allows."
The answer is also simply for art and the possibilities of investigation it offers. The exhibition title captures - both conceptually and materially - the complexity of the terrain that Peter has chosen to explore and to chart. Both investigation and representation, his forms suggest and reference mathematics, engineering, architecture spatial and mapping systems.
Similarly the titles of the works provide routes to understanding the forms - the chords, for example, are lines that cut a circle without crossing the centre; clinamen relates to the angle of repose of a fallen substance and convolute is an exploration of spiral and conical forms.
Peter Trevelyan is currently undertaking a PhD in Fine Arts at Massey University in Wellington. He has built up a solid exhibition history in the public sector in a relatively short time. In early 2012 he was included in City Gallery Wellington's survey of contemporary practice Prospect and recent solo shows include: Tenuous, Pataka Museum of Arts and Cultures, Porirua 2012; Selected proofs, Sofa Gallery, University of Canterbury 2012; the light fantastic, Hirschfield Gallery, Wellington 2010; the mimetic brotherhood, Four Plinths Sculpture Project, Wellington Waterfront, 2009-10; the incompleteness theorem, The Physics Room, Christchurch, 2008; actron and reactron, Enjoy Gallery, Wellington, 2007.