Last year Lew Walsh said to me, the next time you have an exhibition you should invite my friend Kiri, her work is great. I added Kiri’s name to my list of possible artists and then filed it away. When ‘Olveston’ happened I was talking to Susan at work and she said, my friend would be great for Olveston. And there the conversation stopped because we were distracted by work! A few weeks later I mentioned to Susan that I’d made contact with Kiri Mitchell, a ‘new to me’ artist. Well, said Susan, that was the friend I was going to tell you about. Kiri was obviously meant to play a part in this exhibition – everyone was ‘gunning’ for her.
Introducing Kiri Mitchell
I completed my B.F.A in printmaking 2011. I’m a practising artist and student, currently enrolled in Bachelor of Visual Arts, Honours, with the intention of completing a Master of Visual Arts in 2015.
I’m a nightclass tutor for the Dunedin School of Art, life drawing and etching.
My art practice revolves around themes of power and sexual politics, using the figure as a metaphor for the human condition, the emotional and physical realities of occupying a space with another, these works are often dark and full of black humour.
It was a delight to respond to someone else’s work and see where it took me. I chose the poem “A Dutch girl knitting”; I felt a great deal of tenderness was expressed in the words. The simple act of darning the humble sock, honouring the labour of the loved one past and keeping her in his present by doing so is a poetic tribute to a marriage. So my drawing is a simple illustration of those hands, in the act of a labour of love.
The exhibition opens on August 7th @ 5pm. Why not come along? You’ll be able to read the poem I wrote in response to the painting Dutch Girl by Jenny Wimperis and also see Kiri’s response to the poem.