Annah Stretton at THE COLOMBO may gain a new Muse this First Thursdays – her name is Tara Douglas. Look into Annah Stretton's window to find Tara’s new provocative sculptural studies in paper, claiming her own unique response to fashion – something unusual, something colourful, something stimulating and unexpected. The haptic visual presence of shape, the glow and aura of the unpredictable link that Tara can make so positively – a theme of creative play energising time and space through the strength of material form and colour.

Tara completed a Master of Fine Arts degree at the University of Canterbury in early 2014 and this year has been another busy one so far. From Shield, a project designed for the Rear Window Project Space at the Dunedin Public Art Gallery to her upcoming show and her largest work to date, Midnight Blooms,  which will form part of the exhibition lineup for the official opening of the new Ashburton Art Gallery, 23 May 1-4pm. 

As with all her projects, Tara will again transform the window space for First Thursdays with her labour intensive, hand made sculptural practice that uses paper to create immersive installations.

Having travelled and lived in Japan in 2011, where she was able to make studies into traditional paper making, origami, ikebana and the Japanese Kawaii cute culture, Tara has been translating and re-positioning the context of paper within New Zealand art ever since.  In August Tara will again head to Japan to take up a six week artist residency in Onishi, about 2 hours from Tokyo. 

Showing what can be achieved with such humble materials like paper is offering something akin to alchemy and the transformation of a base metal into gold. Precious. Transformative.  See how this can relate to both the fashion design within Annah Stretton and the window space of a store display.

The Kawaii cute culture with its overabundance of positivity founded on the concept of cuteness and its affect on social construct, works in a very interesting and symbolic way to register ideas around the possibilities that can arise out of what seems a mundane reality. Within the post-earthquake zone of Christchurch, Tara has been working her own brand of positivity and inquiry through the tactile forms she creates, (such as Japanese cherry blossoms or the smooth shield fern), and the tensions they form within the spaces she takes them to. Look into the window to see a stimulating new possibility of the way that paper can form ideas and create new dimensions.

You can find out more about Tara Douglas at:

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For First Thursdays Tara is offering a Make A Brooch workshop from 6.30 – 7.30pm at THE COLOMBO. Come along and find your own expression through paper with Tara Douglas.