My arts or creative practice (including details about my specific focus within that art form/practice and my strengths)
I am a visual artist working in a range of media, materials, and methods. I am a curious and playful personality with an interest to discover ‘the gaps’, the ‘in-between’, ‘the unknown’. I have always been interested in the collaborative space; one of potential, stimulating conversations, tensions, and shared growth. Working collaboratively with writers, musicians, and artists over the years has been a fruitful and stimulating space. Since 2007 I have been working in collaboration with another artist in a more formalised way. This has opened up a rich and fertile space where I could push my practice and working methods into new areas. Play and performative activities have enriched the way I engage and the way I make work, also as an individual practitioner. I am interested in our perception of place and the notion of home. My work reflects upon emptiness, displacement, re-collection, memory, personal loss, coding, and de-coding. I have a strong drawing practice. Drawing acts as a gauge – to survey, observe, fragment, unfold, unpeel, and reconstruct layers of meaning in search for a new physicality/reality. Most recently I am exploring my responses to disturbed tectonics, spatial shifts, and new trajectories through digital collage and drawing.
My track record of experience and success - or the track record of experience and success of the creative or artist that I will partner with
I have a substantial track record as an artist and educator. I have studied Fine Arts at a University in Germany (German equivalent of MFA and a Master class student qualification), majoring in printmaking before immigrating to New Zealand. I have been invited Artist in Residence at prestigious international residency programmes (Scotland, France, Altes Spital/Switzerland). I have won several awards over the years and I have been selected as a finalist in all major New Zealand art awards. My works are in a number of private and public collections (including the Wallace Arts Trust Collection). During my career, I have held a number of collaborative community workshops (youth and adults), university lectures, public talks, and presentations (nationally and internationally; organised by public art galleries, museums, art groups). I have worked as a part-time lecturer for a number of years, at a private Art School in Christchurch and in Germany. As part of these engagements, I’ve been given a number of responsibilities and tasks, including teaching print media, drawing, photography, and senior student critique sessions. Course planning, management of students, and moderation processes have all been part of my job over the years.
Describe the experience you have had working with children or young people, teaching or facilitating creative processes
I have been teaching young people (16+) within the tertiary environment for a number of years here in Christchurch and overseas. Teaching Fine Arts (Print media, Drawing, Photography, Digital media) in Germany. Our collaboration was selected for an Artists in Schools project in Auckland, which was very successful and well-received by all involved. We worked across a number of departments, including media studies, drama, visual arts, and music. I have held creative workshops during residencies and exhibitions (creating a Tableau Vivant with a school group in Scotland); residency and community workshop; youth workshops an art gallery, recently workshops (youth and adults) in Whakatane; I have held workshops and talks for teachers at ANZAAE conference.
Why I want to be part of the Creatives in Schools programme and how my involvement will link to my creative practice
I have been a full-time practitioner since 2006 with a significant track record in the creative industry. Ever since I left art school, I have been involved in facilitating and delivering creative education. I feel I have gained an array of experiences and knowledge I would like to continue to share. In my work, critical thinking and questioning existing scenarios is crucial. Artists are critical thinkers and somewhat political, and in questioning a status quo they open up a space of discussion and dialogue. Working with young adults and children is a privilege and arts education/creative explorations are a crucial part in the emotional and mental growth and well-being of any human being. Creative journeys are filled with opportunities to learn new skills; to explore and grow through playfulness, practise some risk-taking and learn problem-solving along the way. These explorations allow children and young adults to discover a space of self and to nurture their own imagination.