Sunday, September 02, 2007

Stephen Birch

Stephen Birch died yesterday and, although he has been ill for some time now, it is still a shock. Stephen exhibited with Hamish McKay and Michael Lett here in New Zealand and we have a couple of great works of his. The last time we talked with Stephen he was walking into his survey show, Looking out my back door at the MCA in Sydney. We weren’t able to get over and had rung to wish him well. As was usual whenever we spoke, he was much more interested in how we were and how we felt about lending to the show, than his own big moment of recognition. His work was curious, courageous and presented with a wonderful mix of whimsy and challenge. You can tell from the catalogue of the MCA show that Stephen was on a roll. It is incredibly sad that his time has been cut so short.
Image: Detail from Stephen Birch's Civic Minded 1999