This year Hastings City Art Gallery will again be hosting the successful EAST biennial exhibition.
EAST will open in August 2018. Proposals were invited from all artists and designers with a connection to Hawke’s Bay and submissions closed at the end of January 2018.
The gallery is thrilled with the appointment of Bruce E. Phillips as guest curator. Phillips is Wellington-based and works as a freelance curator and arts writer. He is well-known for his visionary curatorial practice, including work with artists such as Kalisolaite ‘Uhila, Luke Willis Thompson, Shannon Te Ao, Hannah Valentine and Yona Lee. Until recently he was Senior Curator at Te Tuhi Centre for the Arts in East Auckland. He will work alongside gallery Director Toni MacKinnon. Toni says, “The new EAST is about celebrating the practice of our artists. It is also a chance for artists to work with Bruce. In this way we aim to support the development of community and practice within the art sector in Hawke’s Bay.”
Over the last few months, Phillips has undertaken research in Hawke’s Bay and worked to develop EAST 2018 into a process-led model, in which the exhibition will evolve in conversation with the selected artists and other creative practitioners from the region. Phillips says, “Hastings City Art Gallery’s EAST biennial is a great opportunity for local artists and designers to exhibit in a public art gallery and also for those further afield to reconnect with Heretaunga, Hawke’s Bay. The application process offered emerging creatives the chance to make themselves known and established practitioners the possibility to propose something new. Hawke’s Bay has a rich history and has produced many important New Zealand artists and designers. In my research I have begun to delve into this history to see what it might teach us about the region’s contemporary talent and culture.”