The Stories We Tell Ourselves
07 Aug 2021 – 23 Jan 2022
At the heart of every art museum is its collection, but who are the people that make this heart beat in the first place?
The Stories We Tell Ourselves focuses on the vital role artists have in building collections, by considering their unique abilities as storytellers.
This exhibition highlights recent acquisitions to The Dowse Collection over the last four years, where artists have explored narratives around personal memories, oral traditions, social history and the environment. Drawing on the richness of cultural expression in 21st century Aotearoa New Zealand, their works show how the stories we tell ourselves through art help to define us.
These works are also a visual account of The Dowse and who we are. They reflect our current commitment to collecting pieces by Māori, female, photographic and craft artists—who have all in the past been underrepresented in museums and art history.
The Stories We Tell Ourselves features artworks by Aaron Scythe (Morehu), Areez Katki, Craig McIntosh, Frances Stachl (Ngāpuhi),Gavin Hipkins, Hana Rakena (Ngāpuhi,Ngāi Tahu), Hiria Anderson (Rereahu, Ngāti Maniapoto, Ngāti Apakura), Maioha Kara (Waikato, Ngāti Kahungungu, Te Arawa, Ngāti Porou), Malcolm Ross, Raewyn Walsh, Tia Ranginui (Ngāti Hine Oneone) and Vita Cochran.
This exhibition is part of The Dowse Art Museum’s 50th Anniversary programme. It’s the third in a series of exhibitions in 2021 that considers different aspects from The Collection, as explored in such projects as Ways of Being (2019) and The Mind in the Hand (2016).