ENCOUNTER GROUP EXHIBITION 12 + Artists - Waiheke / New Zealand / International Christina Conrad / Ellen Johansen & MK Walker / Enid Marx / Sarah McKenney / Sue McKenzie / Juliet Peter / Paula Rego James Ross / Kiki Smith / Sue Soo / Oliver Stretton-Pow / Francis Uprtichard Rune van der Voo

Winter - Spring  2017



'Encounter Groups are dead. Long Live Encounter Groups!'

Susan Lindsay


…No more group therapy sessions ‘letting it all hang out’, no more achieving optimal interpersonal relationships…


Unless, it seems, you enrol in a Church Encounter Group weekend.


Or, currently, visit Tivoli with its group of 12+ artists’ works engaging viewers in the mutual experience of encounter.


A group also, inevitably, interacting among themselves.


Some share the same language: colour, say - yellow lightening things up in a number of works and their frames, while a lonely penis (Conrad) may find a friend cavorting on another wall (Johansen & MK Walker). Two dervishes whirl towards each other. An unstable lighthouse (Stretton-Pow) tilts in the centre, while the chooks (Soo) peck outside.


And what of the three international ‘outsiders’?* They hang out together on the main wall: Kiki Smith’s Blue Girl, Paula Rego’s The Guardian and Francis Upritchard’s wasted psypchedelic hippie guru Clan of Rob.

They all present as introverted, rather creepy figures…


…How will they respond to the Encounter Group experience?


* Kiki Smith and Francis Upritchard are both showing at this year’s Venice Biennale, Paula Rego was first Artist-in-Residence at the National Gallery, London.



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