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26 February 1993 —
28 March 1993

Gwen Wanigasekera:
Quilts

Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera, Autumn Cloak, 1989 (installation view). 760mm x 750mm.
Gwen Wanigasekera, Fine Madness - Gentle Obsession, 1992 (installation view). 1880mm x 2260mm.
Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera, Traditional Log Cabin, 1990 (installation view). Silk, satin, cotton. 1600mm x 2000mm.
Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera, Autumn Lillies, 1993 (installation view). 1470mm x 1470mm.
Gwen Wanigasekera, Antique Squares, 1993 (installation view), 600mm x 600mm.
Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993 (installation view).
Gwen Wanigasekera, Sun Cloak, 1989 (installation view). 1000mm x 1000mm.
Gwen Wanigasekera, Tama Tu, Tama Ora, Tama Moe, Tama Mate, 1987 (installation view). 2350mm x 1090mm.

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The first major solo exhibition of quiltmaker Gwen Wanigasekera goes on display at the Fisher Gallery, Pakuranga, from 26 February.

The exhibition consists of over twenty large-scale quilts produced during the last five years by the Hamilton-based artist. The exhibition explores the range of Wanigasekera’s quilts. She has researched many traditional quilts which have been reinterpreted into more contemporary forms.

She says ‘My love of fabric and handmade materials began when I was quite small. Both grandmothers did fine needlework, and one was a painter and woodcarver. Traditional quilts and textiles are still my base. In my work I feel constantly challenged to explore colour, pattern and texture in cloth, and see the results as a blend of all these elements.’

Wanigasekera received a Queen Elizabeth II Arts Council Study Grant and travelled to England to research more traditional forms of quiltmaking. This highlighted for her the stories and the history that each quilt can hold.

The history of quilting being used to protect the body from weapons and cold as well as its development as sought after skill and decorative form elevates it to a different place in our minds than many other forms of needlework. Perhaps with this history of providing warmth, safety and security, is part of the sensuous pleasure we experience when creating, viewing, or sleeping under the quilted surface.

In 1990, Wanigasekera was the recipient of two major awards in the ENZED Sewing Limited Nationwide Patchwork and Quilting Competition. Since then she has exhibited in numerous shows in New Zealand.

Download

→ Gwen Wanigasekera: Quilts, 1993, publication

Press

→ Exquisite quilts, Auckland Tourist Times, 1993
→ Quilts challenge artist's creativity, Howick & Pakuranga Times, 01-03-1993
→ Quintessence in quilts, New Zealand Herald, 04-03-1993
→ The fabric of art, Eastern Courier, 03-03-1993

The gallery is closed for install from 29 January 2023.

Our next exhibition Who can think, what can think curated by Bruce E. Phillips will open 18 February 2023.

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