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MARY-LOUISE BROWNE
IN CAMERA , 14 OCTOBER - 7 NOVEMBER 2020

We are delighted to present this new exhibition by Mary-Louise Browne - In Camera is her first solo exhibition using leadlight. With her signature wit, she presents stained glass doors and windows incorporating language.
 
Given the prevalence of text in Browne's practice, the work is primarily about the process of reading, seeing and comprehending the visual. Our attention is called to the role of language in articulating and registering what we see and experience. Using text rather than imagery, Browne speaks to the visual while refusing the prevalence of images and their authority over contemporary imagination.
 
Cerebral at first glance, the work is also infused with colour, warmth and even tactility. There's an interesting paradox at its heart. On the one hand, Browne's a leading practitioner of text-based conceptual minimalism, on the other a lover of materiality and "the thinginess of things".
 
Studying in the post-object height of the Elam School of Fine Arts at the University of Auckland in the early 1980s, and completing a Masters in Fine Arts, Browne majored in sculpture producing performance and installation works. Her interest in the performative power of words and use of found words, often drawn from song lyrics, movie scripts and theoretical writing, replicates conceptual art's use of everyday objects.
 
In camera - deriving from the latin word meaning a chamber - usually refers to a judge's private chamber but has more generally come to simply reference something experienced in private, losing it's literal link to the room - and here, of course it's the viewer's personal engagement with the gallery installation. Browne says:
"I like the allusiveness that is earned by simplifying situations and expanding resonances through the concentration of language and pattern - the viewer being viewed and a participant in the process"





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