Whanganui-based artist Sue Cooke’s new exhibition 'A Songless Land'
eulogises lost New Zealand forests,
and highlights the plight of those forests remaining,
including the devastating issue of Kauri dieback.
Before the arrival of humans in Aotearoa New Zealand,
85% of its land area was covered with indigenous forests. Now it’s a mere 15%.
“Sadly, despite many organisations and individuals working
to preserve and reverse the trend,
New Zealand’s forests are still being lost, albeit at a slower pace.”
The artist chose to create large-scale artworks so that visitors feel enclosed,
overpowered and dwarfed by the forest experience.
It took the artist three years to develop drawings,
small scale models and artwork for this exhibition.
The concepts evolved during a year of travel and research
into deforestation around New Zealand,
funded by the Pollack Krasner Foundation, New York, in 2015-16.
You can see this work at Te Manawa Museum Art Gallery.
For more information, see www.suecooke.co.nz