Sara Hughes exhibition dot•land at te tuhi - the mark is a journey into a different world. It is a multi-layered and complex place that stimulates the imagination and challenges perceptions of painting and installation. The large glass entrance wall and doors are covered with a matrix of pink dots, which continually slip between order and chaos. Is this an obscure computer code, a mathematical formula, or a series of map coordinates that we require to navigate our way through dot•land? These varied connections provide a glimpse of the world we are about to encounter.
dot•land represents a model for a physical universe and one for the psychological and cultural worlds. As we experience the physicality of this world, imagination and reason, memory and knowledge are exercised in a never-ending game of recognition. In this space both microcosm and the macrocosm are intricate and complex. Although equally present we cannot perceive of them simultaneously, the eye is caught alternatively by the minute detail of tiny individual dots or the complexity of the overall form.
This exhibition stretches our perceptions of, and blurs the boundaries between painting and installation. The work resembles a painting; colours create illusions on a flat surface, however, instead of paint and brush the artist sticks dots to the wall to create a visual illusion. The participant is enclosed within the painting; reminiscent of the wall frescoes of the Renaissance and Baroque, painting has returned to its original form, that of being an integral and inseparable element of the architecture. However, the false walls do not create illusionary architectural space on the surface of the original walls, but interfere with the original architecture by creating a new constructed space.
Text by Susan Campbell Jones
→ Sara Hughes: dot•land, 2002, exhibition card
→ Come explore Dot Land, Howick and Pakuranga Times, 07-01-2002
→ Messages surge through air, New Zealand Herald, 28-01-2002