Ironically two of the artists who were part of the first exhibition held at the Fritz Reuter Gallery could also well be the last.
Taranaki photographers Margaret Bake and Derek Hughes were joined by Adam Buckle and Helen Wilkin ten years ago at the official opening of the gallery named after a ship which brought the Polish settlers to Inglewood in 1876.
“If my eyesight hadn’t failed through that shingles attack 25 years ago leading to the demise of my business, we would have never come to Inglewood and possibly the Inglewood photographic group may never have been formed. So you just never know circumstances change,” said Margaret.
Over the years the gallery has averaged 5,000 visitors a year and has been well recognised as a community arts and crafts gallery says curator Richard Jordan.
Inglewood Development Trust chairman Graham Meads says in the past there was a 12 month wait to exhibit but in recent times the gallery was often empty. At a recent meeting it was decided to turn the front room of the gallery into a museum featuring early Inglewood.
In their latest exhibition Margaret Bake has stepped away from her camera and has taken up painting.
“It’s not very often that an exhibition happens where photography and painting are put together. Usually it is one or other unless you have a major exhibition space where it is being sold like Real Tart or Kina. You don’t often see a photographer and a painter together or a photographer abandoning photography and picking up a paintbrush,” says Margaret.
Derek explains his work as “just another interpretation of art” as he displays traditional photos alongside extremely manipulated images.
“I’ve been around long enough to be an absolute purist with the camera and what I capture in the camera has to be good. But as you can see from some of my work, it is seriously manipulated work. The camera is the main tool and the computer is letting me recreate the scene as I saw it,” he said.
The exhibition “From Pixels to Paint” will be on display at the Fritz Reuter Gallery, Rata Street, Inglewood from the 4th of July to the 17th August.
This article was published in the North Taranaki Midweek on Wednesday July 16 2014.