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Ashken & Drawbridge


Fri 8 Jan 2021, 10:00am–5:00pm
Sat 9 Jan 2021, 10:00am–5:00pm
Sun 10 Jan 2021, 10:00am–5:00pm
Mon 11 Jan 2021, 10:00am–5:00pm
Wed 13 Jan 2021, 10:00am–5:00pm

Where: Fe29 Gallery, 30 Sandringham St, Dunedin, Otago

Restrictions: All Ages

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  • Admission: Free
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Listed by: thelab

Ashken won the second Frances Hodgkins Fellowship (University of Otago) in 1967. Her most recognisable work is the landmark Albatross (1985-86), a 3.5-metre high water sculpture overlooking the lagoon on Wellington's waterfront. This work became the catalyst for the birth of the Wellington Sculpture Trust.

Inspired by Brancusi (whose Paris studio she stumbled upon late one afternoon in 1961), Tanya reveals a constant artistic struggle to inter-relate concept and form and to shape what emerges. Ideas are abstracted into essential form, encouraging the viewer to let the eye travel through the line of the work and beyond.

“She quotes rather than copies nature in the discovery of her own unique forms, and she treats her subject matter with a sympathy and a delicacy which is indicative of a deep concern for the natural world.” Stephen Cain. If nature has been an ongoing inspiration, then culture has provided a balance in Tanya’s quest for form – pre-Classical and Classical traditions of her European heritage a strong motivation.

Her sensuous sculptures embody strength, elegance, and timelessness – Classical in spirit and organic in form.

In 2019 (at 80 years old), Ashken was one of 20 artists selected to exhibit in Sculpture in the Gardens at the Auckland Botanic Gardens, with her bronze Dogon Bird. She also completed Luna, carved from marble. A bronze casting is included in this show, alongside Dogon Bird and several other new works.

Accompanying Tanya’s pieces are a selection of works by her late husband John Drawbridge MBE (1930-2005). This includes several oil paintings, early drawing, watercolour from 1950/60’s, an undated acrylic, and a number of rare, signed original prints.

Other gallery spaces include works by a variety of other respected artists including, but not limited to Gennie de Lange, Hamish Horsley, Marian Fountain, Marté Szirmay, Edward Povey, and Christine Hellyar.

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