Cook Islands artist - Sylvia Marsters BERGMAN GALLERY 22111122
When the Aotearoa Art Fair opens in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland on Wednesday, November 16, it will be a celebration of Cook Islands Va‘ine for Bergman Gallery. By Rachel Smith.
Tungane Broadbent, Mahiriki Tangaroa, Sylvia Marsters and Nina Oberg Humphries
all feature at the art fair this year, the fifth that Bergman Gallery has been
selected to participate in.
Tangaroa and Marsters the timing is significant, coinciding with their solo
shows on opposite sides of the world – Tangaroa in Venice and Marsters in
exhibition, Kaveinga - Angels of the Ocean,is currently showing
as part of Personal Structures in Venice, the European Cultural Centre’s
curated project held in parallel with La Biennale di Venezia.
work is based on the ocean, looking at traditional culture, the links that we
had with neighbouring islands, the shared linguistics, art objects, and systems
that were in place at the time,” says Tangaroa. “The exhibition in Venice has impacted greatly, in
terms of opportunities, and it’s been somewhat of an incentive, being
approached by international institutions to purchase and acquire work.”
E Moemoea Naku – A Dream of Mine,
Marsters solo show, opened at Bergman Gallery Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland two weeks ago.
The show features Marsters stunningly detailed Tiare Taina and Kaute, as well
solo exhibition in Auckland after a long hiatus (2007) made me realise the significance
of my time in the Cook Islands; it’s almost 20 years since I first set foot on
Rarotonga,” says Marsters.
painting figures when invited to participate in Sunday Girl, an
exhibition for women artists. It gave me freedom to explore and step
outside of my gallery representation. Working on this solo exhibition in
Auckland, the figures naturally began appearing, at first emerging through the
foliage and then two small paintings completely dedicated to this new
and Marsters will present new work at the art fair, as will Tivaivai artist,
Broadbent, who is teamed with senior Aotearoa artist Reuben Paterson. It is the
second time the artists have shown work together, the first in the 2017 show, Today,
Tomorrow & Yesterday,at Bergman Gallery in Rarotonga. Paterson
will again respond to Broadbent’s Tivaivai, which will include Manu (two tone),
Tataura (embroidery) with a series of his glitter works.
are radically different mediums,” says Ben Bergman, director of Bergman
Gallery. “It’s the conceptual elements that bind them – the themes they
articulate are similar.”
debut with Bergman Gallery at the art fair, Oberg Humphries’ staff god
sculptures were part of the opening group show at Bergman Gallery Tāmaki MakaurauAuckland, earlier in the year.
during her 2020 Pacific Artist in Residence at the University of Canterbury’s
Macmillan Brown Centre for Pacific Studies, each staff god sculpture consists
of a “stick” at its centre, topped with a “found” Tangaroa, and wrapped in
layers of material Pacific culture such as plastic woven mat, tapa, fake fruit
and plastic bags.
work at the art fair will include one of her staff gods, alongside a new series
of her intricate “moulded” sculptures.
the art fair, Oberg Humphries has a solo show at Bergman Gallery Rarotonga in
will also be showing the work of artists Benjamin Work, Telly Tuita, Shannon
Novak, Heather Straka, Gavin Jones and Raymond Sagapolutele at the art fair,
with sculpture by Semisi
Fetokai Potauaine in the exterior sculpture park.