Transforming everyday objects into art

Press Release – Massey University

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Transforming everyday objects into art

Two Australian artists who have carved a career out of transforming everyday objects into art works are the most recent recipients of the Te Whare Hēra Wellington International Artist Residency run in conjunction with Massey’s College of Creative Arts.

Contemporary artists Claire Healy and Sean Cordeiro will hold regular artist led events, open studios and exhibitions of their work during the five-month residency.

The couple have exhibited widely including an installation at the Auckland Art Gallery in 2013, an exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney in 2012 and an exhibition called The Paper Trail at the Art Gallery of New South Wales in 2007.

Over the past decade and with growing family in tow, Healy and Cordeiro have travelled and lived in Asia, Europe, North America and Australasia. Associate Professor Ann Shelton, who is coordinator for the international arts residency, says this nomadic lifestyle is reflected in their art through frequent use of prefabricated objects and existing transportation and packaging systems. Works such as Par Avion – a Cessna aircraft sliced up and posted piece by piece from the USA to Australia by airmail – are evidence of their keen eye for logistical flights of fancy, she says.

Working together since 2001, Healy and Cordeiro are playful commentators on the aspirational dreams and pressures of everyday life. They often use consumer products as the raw material for their sculptures and installations, assembling monuments from LEGO blocks, IKEA furniture, and off-the-shelf pieces of flatpack homeware.

Ms Shelton says with their interests in ideas of home and the overlapping systems that shape globalised life, living and working in the purpose-built studio, gallery and apartment suite at Clyde Quay Wharf on Wellington Waterfront as International Artists in Residence is a perfect fit for the duo.

Run by Massey University’s Whiti o Rehua School of Art at the college and Wellington City Council, Te Whare Hēra brings international artists to contribute to the city’s vibrant cultural life, she says.

For more information on the residency programme:
For more information about the artists:

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