Thursday, March 17, 2016

Fixtures and fittings

In 1997 when Colin McCahon’s Urewera Mural was hi-jacked from its possie in the Department of Conservation’s Te Ureweara's visitor center it set up a two year search. In HBO style it was eventually recovered thanks to Jenny Gibbs, Te Kaha and Tame Iti. In this extended search you can bet on one category of dwellings that weren’t turned over and that would be expensive apartments with names like 'The Lighthouse'. So it's odd to find the UM hanging in the dining area in a Trade Me ad for luxury living with ‘elegant modernist aesthetics that are timeless’. OK it's somewhat shrunk, the original is five and a half meters wide which is a bit on the large side even for Auckland apartments, but the aspiration is there. This isn’t the first time a work by McCahon has been cut and pasted onto walls for artistic effect. The architects of the Auckland Art Gallery rather unfortunately grabbed Victory over death from the Australian National Gallery’s collection to deck out proposed AAG spaces. But the Urewera Mural for décor, seriously? Whatever happened to Vladimir Tretchikoff and V van G.
Thanks H and you too M