A+W NZ Tātuhi Exhibition in Nelson

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1 September 2022

A+W NZ has two concurrent exhibitions on at The Refinery Artspace in Nelson - the A+W NZ Tātuhi Drawing Architecture: Sarah Treadwell Archive, and the A+W NZ Timeline. The opening for this very first physical showing of what is a digital archive was well attended, despite recent floods in the area that also had an impact on delivery of some the exhibition works. One of the artists in the exhibition, Devyani Sethi, travelled to Nelson for the opening event, with family.

The foundation work for the archive, by Sarah Treadwell, remains digital and is projected onto hanging silks. All other works are physical, although for the opening night, the three framed works by Lusitania Vete, Jonathan Morrish and Mikaela King were delayed due to road closures between Blenheim and Nelson. The 'spirit' of these works were projected onto their designated positions, and are now (physically) hanging in these locations.

A huge thank you to our long-term sponsor for the A+W NZ Tātuhi Drawing Architecture: Sarah Treadwell Archive, Metalcraft.

Oceanic Study (2017) by Sarah Treadwell

Upon Constitution Hill (2019) by Matthew Boyuan Cao

Bhāvanā (2020) by Devyani Sethi

Tūrangawaewae | A Place to Stand Jonathan Morrish

Tūrangawaewae | A Place to Stand Jonathan Morrish

Residue of Ink No.3 (2022) by Mikaela King

Residue of Ink No.3 (2022) by Mikaela King

Feitu'u Faiva Long Section (2018) by Lusitania Vete

Feitu'u Faiva Long Section (2018) by Lusitania Vete

Upon Constitution Hill (2019) by Matthew Boyuan Cao

Upon Constitution Hill (2019) by Matthew Boyuan Cao

Oceanic Study (2017) by Sarah Treadwell

images: Madalena Refiti, Lynda Simmons, Theja Jayalath, Mischa Culchane

Lynda Simmons talked about the reasons for the archive and its long-term vision at the opening event;

Welcome to the opening of the A+W NZ Tātuhi / Drawing Architecture: Sarah Treadwell Archive, a digital storehouse of architectural drawings.

This is the beginning of a collection of selected works – it is not a competition and not an award, although there is an annual selection process to build the archive collection.                    

We are very pleased to be showing the archive in its early years, as it becomes established and grows slowly. Established in 2017, the archive is now in its 5th year.

This is the first ever physical showing of our archive – which is in fact a digital archive. We wish to regularly show the physical works, a kind of realising of the digital life of the archive at intermittent stages of its growth.

So there is an irony here, because being cut off from Blenheim due to the floods has meant that 3 of the 6 works are still in transit - they will be here tomorrow, so for tonight we are exhibiting them digitally, they are here in spirit, as it were.

The only digital projection once they arrive will be the central piece projected onto silk, which is the foundation drawing by Sarah Treadwell.

As mentioned earlier, we are indebted to our sole sponsor Metalcraft, whose support helped us establish the addition to our website, and who continue to support us each year. It is lovely to have Marina Ralph from Metalcraft here with us this evening, and we thank Frances Charles, who we have been working with over the years.

The Tātuhi / Drawing Architecture was established in 2017 as a way to mark the year of retirement of Dr Sarah Treadwell, and her significant career in architectural education. For those who may not be aware, Dr Sarah Treadwell’s approach to teaching has included a strong focus on the importance of drawing in architectural thinking, and she has made the school of Architecture and Planning at Waipapa Taumata Rau The University of Auckland well-known for its excellence in what can be termed drawing-thinking.

We wished to recognise her influence on several generations of architects, artists and students, in a way that reflected her values and pedagogy focus. An archive in her name reminds us of the long reach that ideas- through drawing - can have.

Each year, a single drawing is selected by Sarah and her nominated team from the masters courses around the country. The archive is a slow-building record of drawing styles and influences in New Zealand Architecture Schools over years and decades.

The 6 Archive drawings to date include:

  • Oceanic Study (2017) by Sarah Treadwell, (foundation drawing)
  • Feitu'u Faiva Long Section (2018) by Lusitania Vete
  • Upon Constitution Hill (2019) by Matthew Boyuan Cao,
  • Bhāvanā (2020) by Devyani Sethi,
  • Tūrangawaewae | A Place to Stand Jonathan Morrish and
  • Residue of Ink No.3 (2022) by Mikaela King.

It’s wonderful to be joined by some of the artists here in Nelson - Devyani Sethi is here with family, and Matthew Cao is here with….

We intend to continue with the exhibition every five years, so in 2027 we will be back again asking to borrow your original works for its showing in a slightly larger group show than this one.

We hope you all enjoy the slowness of the exhibition in the same way that we do – somehow the single annual addition eventually catches the movement of changing ideas over time.

A significant legacy in Sarah’s name.  Enjoy your evening.

Feitu'u Faiva Long Section (2018) by Lusitania Vete

Residue of Ink No.3 (2022) by Mikaela King

Residue of Ink No.3 (2022) by Mikaela King

Tūrangawaewae | A Place to Stand Jonathan Morrish

Tūrangawaewae | A Place to Stand Jonathan Morrish

A+W NZ Installation Team:

Theja Jayalath

Madalena Refiti

Lynda Simmons

Mischa Culhane

Refinery Installation Team:

Janja Heathfield

Adam Albrecht