Press Release – Letting Space
Residents in Berhampore have been asking if MacAlister and Liardet Parks have been visited by vandals or crop circle creators.
Artist Siv Fjaerestad has been testing grass paint on the fields. She is asking Wellingtonians for stories about both parks to help them create this temporary public artwork and is looking for information from anyone who uses the park. This can be provided via an online survey at www.surveymonkey.com/s/macalister_liardetstreet_parks_survey
Siv B. Fjaerestad’s Projected Fields, produced by public art programme Letting Space, is a unique, contemporary art project extending what we consider both painting and public art. It will ask questions about how we use our city grounds and raise the parks’ profile.
This major public art project is being supported by Wellington City Council’s public art fund and the final display is planned for November 2014.
Council Arts Advisor Jodie Dalgleish says, “Projected Field was selected for its ability to enliven and enrich our city, particularly its green spaces, not often thought of in relation to art, but importantly related to shared experiences. We are keen to see the way artists, curators and communities can be involved in a whole new field of art-making.”
The field painting will explore the visual language of field markings and signage seen on sports and recreational grounds, overlaying textures, changing perspectives and representations of natural, man-made and digitally rendered scenery. It will also provide a backdrop for performances and actions inspired by current and new activities in the park. Playing fields and parks are the common ground for some of the public’s most diverse activities, organised and unorganised.
Projected Fields explores how man-made systems such as sports field markings, paths and signage enable, limit and otherwise choreograph our movements and actions in parks and commons areas.
“Grass is a social material,” says artist Siv B Fjaerestad. “It is probably the most common natural material and source of experience in every community throughout New Zealand. The sports ground and commons present a different and interesting playing field for making art because it is governed by how various communities, clubs and individuals use it. The park is perceived, used and interpreted differently at different times of the day and week.”
See www.lettingspace.org.nz/projected-fields/ for more information.
About the creators
Siv B. Fjærestad is a Norwegian-born artist and curator, living in New Zealand. She holds an MA in Visual Arts from Goldsmiths College in London, and has exhibited in the UK and New Zealand. She has previously worked as Manager and Curator at Enjoy where she curated One Day Sculpture with Welsh artist Bedwyr Williams, and co-commissioned and curated An Imaginary Archive with New York based collaborative artist and academic, Gregory Sholette.
In 2011 Fjærestad chaired a Wairarapa based arts and culture community initiative called Featherston Seen, for which she created and exhibited works based on local recreational grounds. A former resident of Berhamphore, she is currently working part-time managing Featherston Community Centre, which hosts many South Wairarapa organisations and community groups.
Based in Wellington, Letting Space is a major independent art, media and urban revitalisation organisation seeking to transform the relationship between the public and their environment to enable social change through art and to think more creatively and collectively about our environment.
Letting Space has commissioned and curated over a dozen projects nationally since 2010, as well as running the Urban Dream Brokerage, which enables other independent producers to create innovative projects in vacant retail spaces in Wellington.