More than meets the eye on cafe walls

D Solomon Artwork
Tina Drain fabric work
Southern Seas Quilt

Derek Solomon at Muirs Bookshop Cafe

A painting of a classic study of flower arrangement was very popular, says Derek Solomon whose fresh flower series is on show in Muirs Bookshop Cafe.

“But I thought it wasn’t challenging. It didn’t take me to the level of intensity and risk I love. The fresh flower series aims to bring a bit of freshness to painting flowers.

“My impression was, if you want to sell you have to know what the market wants.

“I got this notion if I could at least get the market to look at the work then I could progress to looking at the symbolism of each flower and be more expressive in style with influences of artists I admire.”

He cites early modernist Henri Matisse and pop artist Andy Warhol as two of those artists and waves at New Zealand painters such as Colin McCahon who incorporated text in the works.

On investigating the symbolism behind each flower in the series he found a historical story. This is evident in his pink, and white, lotus flower paintings.

For Buddhists the pink lotus represents the history of Buddha while the white lotus symbolises Bodhi, a state of complete mental purity.

“It was about taking that and reinventing it a bit in a combined style.

“In the three lotus flower paintings you see a bunch of words in the border. Words have always been a popular idiom in New Zealand.

“I’m leaning towards expression and the abstract. In other artwork I do it has the same darkness in it.”

Tina Drain at Verve Cafe

A love of fabric led to Tina Drain’s first exhibition. Her compositions are made up of pieces of material that lend a variety of textures and colours to her summery, beach-front images. Stitched outlines of objects such as clouds, cabbage trees and sea have a scribbly, spontaneous effect.

“I do a lot of sewing and did a course in free motion quilting,” says the artist.

This is a process in which the maker controls stitch length, and the direction of the stitching line, by moving the quilt by hand. Stitching can be made in any direction.

“It lets you draw all over the fabric, wherever you want to go,” says Drain.

The artist’s love of camping provided her with subject matter for beach-themed works.

“I like anything bright and vibrant. My works are made up of cut-out fabric laid on top of each other and sewn black lines. The flowers are hand-embroidered.”

Stocked with “hundreds of bits of fabric”, Drain chooses from a range of textures and colour effects such as indented or dyed effects to build up her compositions.

Quilters at Zest

A quilting process known as foundation quilting is used by Kathy Grimson to create small patterned works miniatures. The bigger pieces are by Adrienne Douglas and include a work (pictured) she created for the transit of Venus exhibition at Tairawhiti Museum in 2012.

Derek Solomon at Muirs Bookshop Cafe

A painting of a classic study of flower arrangement was very popular, says Derek Solomon whose fresh flower series is on show in Muirs Bookshop Cafe.

“But I thought it wasn’t challenging. It didn’t take me to the level of intensity and risk I love. The fresh flower series aims to bring a bit of freshness to painting flowers.

“My impression was, if you want to sell you have to know what the market wants.

“I got this notion if I could at least get the market to look at the work then I could progress to looking at the symbolism of each flower and be more expressive in style with influences of artists I admire.”

He cites early modernist Henri Matisse and pop artist Andy Warhol as two of those artists and waves at New Zealand painters such as Colin McCahon who incorporated text in the works.

On investigating the symbolism behind each flower in the series he found a historical story. This is evident in his pink, and white, lotus flower paintings.

For Buddhists the pink lotus represents the history of Buddha while the white lotus symbolises Bodhi, a state of complete mental purity.

“It was about taking that and reinventing it a bit in a combined style.

“In the three lotus flower paintings you see a bunch of words in the border. Words have always been a popular idiom in New Zealand.

“I’m leaning towards expression and the abstract. In other artwork I do it has the same darkness in it.”

Tina Drain at Verve Cafe

A love of fabric led to Tina Drain’s first exhibition. Her compositions are made up of pieces of material that lend a variety of textures and colours to her summery, beach-front images. Stitched outlines of objects such as clouds, cabbage trees and sea have a scribbly, spontaneous effect.

“I do a lot of sewing and did a course in free motion quilting,” says the artist.

This is a process in which the maker controls stitch length, and the direction of the stitching line, by moving the quilt by hand. Stitching can be made in any direction.

“It lets you draw all over the fabric, wherever you want to go,” says Drain.

The artist’s love of camping provided her with subject matter for beach-themed works.

“I like anything bright and vibrant. My works are made up of cut-out fabric laid on top of each other and sewn black lines. The flowers are hand-embroidered.”

Stocked with “hundreds of bits of fabric”, Drain chooses from a range of textures and colour effects such as indented or dyed effects to build up her compositions.

Quilters at Zest

A quilting process known as foundation quilting is used by Kathy Grimson to create small patterned works miniatures. The bigger pieces are by Adrienne Douglas and include a work (pictured) she created for the transit of Venus exhibition at Tairawhiti Museum in 2012.

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