November 20 - December 2, 143 Featherston Street, Wellington.
A sculpture comprised of the plastic wrapping that surrounds our daily lives, Eve Armstrong's Taking Stock was a sublime retail display landscape in an empty Wellington showroom. Armstrong's project saw the collection of clear and milky white packaging from the public through art galleries and other organisations to construct a stocktake of retail packaging, creating meaning from what is usually thrown away.
Engaging with all the seductive qualities of retail and advertising display, Taking Stock used the materials that surround our goods – the sort that you usually have to rip apart to get to the goodies. It addressed the visual techniques used to market and sustain our consumer culture but offered nothing to buy or sell, and no promises or dreams to invest in. Instead, Taking Stock turned the mirror back on the shopper, asking them to rethink the natural and manmade world around them, and be both dazzled and disturbed by its beauty and emptiness.
Taking Stock created a gap in the realty and consumer market. Providing a pause for us to reflect and take stock, it was a little breathing space as we headed into the crackle and whirl of Christmas shopping and all its attendant packaging.
Our property partners for this project were CB Richard Ellis.
Our thanks to The New Dowse, Mahara Gallery and City Gallery Wellington for their great assistance with materials, and together with Pataka, Toi Poneke and Enjoy Galleries providing public collection points for plastic. Thanks also for their generous contributing of materials Grayley Plastics, The Glass Shoppe, Flight Plastics, and to all who contributed plastics.
Thanks to Technician Paul Wilson and to our Space sitters Philippa Clements, Harriet Lethbridge, Meryl Richards, Kirsty Lilico, Kylie Walker, Lauren Redican, John Grant, Lee Browne, Helen Keivom, Janet McGifford and Natalie Ellen Eliza.
Thanks also to Ibis, Featherston Street for their assistance.