COLOUR DRAIN : Across mediums, glimpsing the University of Waikato Art Collection in restrained hues

Reuben Paterson, ‘Naturist’, 2005, Glitterdust screenprint on Fabriano, The University of Waikato Art Collection.
Date Tuesday 2 May - Friday 6 October 2023
Where Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts Foyer Galleries
Contact Cerys Davidson
Contact email
Admission Cost Free

Every twenty-four hours colours seemingly drain from the world as twilight descends. The sun sets, and as it goes it snatches up the light, appearing to absorb and steal the colours into sometimes brilliant sunsets. We are left with a world of shadows, the soft hues of the moon illuminate only black, white and murky grey. This loss of light and colour can be melancholy and gloomy, yet it also has its own beauty and simplicity as forms render down to a monochromatic world of shade.

Yet the way we all see colour varies, and as the shadows move in each night some colour remains as the weaker rays of the moon illuminate, along with the manufactured light from the streets and our homes. When this restrained colour pallet is represented in art, form becomes the focus, line and texture are highlighted. Often, some vestiges of colour also remain, as if the known hues are retained, just hiding in the limited light, waiting to be revealed when illuminated again.

Does medium play a part in these variations? Consider the media of pencil, charcoal and ink, the obvious drawing tools which illustrate in generally black and white, or grey and white. The print medium then relates, where a single hue can offer clear translation of the pattern. In paint, however, the colour pallet more likely expands in the same manner as mixed media. Then how do photography, audio/visual and mixed media change the interpretation? Are there any connections, or does each stand alone as individual as each artist who created the piece?

Artworks from the University of Waikato Art collection are brought together in this exhibition sharing a monochromatic world of shade. In the same way that colour drains from the world as twilight descends each day, the artworks on show are composed with restricted hues, though reflected through variations of medium.