Quirky colour comes to Queenstown
Lyttelton-based artist Alexandra Weston’s art is lining the walls of QT at their new art space, Gallery 6. Her unique work uses vibrant colour, and her interest in detail and generous allowance of time gives each piece great depth.
Alexandra became a full-time artist in 2017 after spending some time in Hong Kong. She has since shown her work at a number of group and solo exhibitions in Christchurch, Wellington and Auckland, and has sold work to collectors all over the world.
“I lived in Hong Kong from my early 20s for 14 years,” says Alexandra. “I was in the creative industry there – I worked in a gallery, and then I, with a business partner, created a lifestyle store in 2010. It was very much a creative world for me, and it’s really the land of opportunity in Hong Kong.
“While I was there, I used to troll the back streets and there’s a lot of interesting alleyways and spots there, including this street that made perfect signage. Unlike here, where most signage is metal or wood, over there it’s all made out of Perspex and a lot of it is lit from behind. So this street with all these sign makers – they would chuck their offcuts onto the street in a cardboard box hoping someone would take them away, and they were quite decent-size cuts.”
Alexandra began collecting the Perspex offcuts over the years, not really knowing exactly what she would do with them. When she moved back to New Zealand in 2018, she decided to start painting on them, and the art that we see today was created.
“It’s a really cool product to paint on – the paint runs beautifully onto the Perspex because it’s so slippery. Then when I have my work framed, I’m framing it so that the bit that I’ve been working on is at the back of the artwork, so the viewer is seeing the clean size through the Perspex. I haven’t had a desire to paint on a board or canvas. The Perspex has just become my thing, and it’s a really cool product.”
While she will occasionally check the underside of the art as she’s working on it, she often tries to refrain from looking to allow some mystery. It can be quite time consuming to get enough coverage across the back of the Perspex to get the desired effect.
For the current exhibition at QT, Alexandra is displaying a new series of work – rather than painting the back of Perspex, she is has been placing paint between two panels of Perspex, crushing and manipulating the paint, and allowing it to dry and then repeating the process. This is the first time she’s had this style of work on show.
Gallery 6 is on level 6 at QT and will display 16 of Alexandra’s works for the next six months, and pieces will be available to purchase. You can find out more about Alexander and check out some of her artwork at alexandraweston.com