Nau mai, haere mai, welcome to eyeCONTACT, a forum built to encourage art reviews and critical discussion about the visual culture of Aotearoa New Zealand. I'm John Hurrell its editor, a New Zealand writer, artist and curator. While Creative New Zealand and other supporters are generously paying me and other contributors to review exhibitions over the following year, all expressed opinions are entirely our own.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Same but different

Laurence Aberhart
Sue Crockford
11 March -5 April 2008

While the big Laurence Aberhart exhibition is up in the New Gallery, Sue Crockford is doing the smart thing and showing some of the same (for sale) and more. Thirty-nine photographs total.

None are framed or behind glass though. Here you can look directly at the paper the image is on, see the delicate nuances of hue and tone, and the textures or stipples of the material on which the light sensitive chemicals are placed. Each image peeks through a window cut – with bevelled edge – into a white cardboard mount. All the same size, and unlike the New Gallery show, in a row around the walls.

Without wooden frames or glass the photos look exposed (no corny pun intended). They are not completely naked though, the cardboard mounts hide their edges so you don’t get a sense of sheet as object. You look through the window and through the photograph, not at it. And wonder at how utterly different the three methods (frame, mount, photo alone) turn out to be.

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