Neil Dawson

NEIL DAWSON

Neil holds a Diploma of Fine Arts (Hons) from Canterbury University and a Graduate Diploma in Sculpture from the Victorian College of the Arts in Melbourne. Since his earliest installation in 1979 for the Robert McDougall Art Gallery, Seascape, he has gone on to compile an impressive portfolio of works held both in New Zealand and overseas.

Neil’s career, to date, has focused on the production of large-scale, and site-specific, sculptures in New Zealand, Australia and Asia. He is best known for his suspended sculptures, the first of which was Echo (1981) installed in the Christchurch Arts Centre.

In 1989, he created his first suspended sphere, Globe, for the exhibition ‘Magiciens de la Terre’ at the Pompidou Centre in Paris. Neil went on to use the basic form of the suspended sphere in several more works, most notably Ferns, installed in Wellington’s Civic Square in 1998.

He was also commissioned by the Olympic Co-ordination Authority to produce an artwork for the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, the result of which was Feathers and Skies, situated above the main entrance to Stadium Australia. In his hometown of Christchurch he is perhaps best known for Chalice, an 18m-high conical structure installed in Cathedral Square in 2001.

Neil was the recipient of an Arts Foundation Laureate Award in 2003. The Laureate Award is an investment in excellence across a range of art forms for an artist with prominence and outstanding potential for future growth. Their work is rich but their richest work still lies ahead of them. The Award recognises a moment in the artists’ career that will allow them to have their next great success.

In 2005 and 2006 Neil completed his first major outdoor works in the United Kingdom with the installation of Raindrops and Wellsphere in Manchester. In  recent years Neil has returned to making smaller scale works.

In 2011 Neil completed his first major outdoor work in mainland China, Feather from Afar, in Pudong Shanghai, China.

Recently, Neil has unveiled a new work entitled Spires, in Latimer Square, Christchurch. This sculpture serves as reminder of the Christ Church Cathedral and other neo-gothic structures that perished or were damaged in the devastating 2010 and 2011 earthquakes. Neil hopes that Spires will stimulate discussion about artwork in the city and the value of design and the creative industries as Christchurch moves further away from recovery into the rebuild.

Neil Dawson was born in 1948 in Christchurch. He holds a Diploma of Fine Arts (Hons) from Canterbury University and a Graduate Diploma in Sculpture from the Victorian College of the Arts in Melbourne.

EDUCATION

1973
Graduated with a Diploma in Sculpture from the National Gallery of Victoria Art School, Melbourne, Australia

1971
Diploma of Teaching at Christchurch Teachers College, Christchurch

1970
Graduated with a Diploma of Fine Arts (Hons), School of Fine Arts, Canterbury University, Christchurch

1969 – 1966
School of Fine Art, Canterbury University, Christchurch. Dawson studied sculpture under Tom Taylor and Eric Doudney

SELECTED SOLO EXHIBITIONS

2014
Spires, Page Blackie Gallery, Wellington
On Hollowed Ground, Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch

2013
Silver Linings, Milford Galleries, Dunedin

2012
Orange Zone, Page Blackie Gallery, Wellington

2011
Pulse, Page Blackie Gallery Wellington
Incident 1992/2011, Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch

2010
Five Years, Milford Galleries, Queenstown
Deck: Second Hand, Milford Galleries, Queenstown
DECK: Three of a Kind, Page Blackie Gallery, Wellington

2009
Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch

2007
Vanishing Points, Anna Bibby Gallery, Auckland
Recent Work, Milford Galleries. Queenstown
Recent Work, Jonathan Smart Gallery. Christchurch

2006
Thoughts on Ice, Janne Land Gallery, Wellington

2005
Craters, Anna Bibby Gallery, Auckland,
Recent Wall Sculptures, Milford Galleries, Dunedin

2004
Wall Sculpture 2004, Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch

2003
Wall Sculptures, Janne Land Gallery, Wellington
New Wall Sculptures, Peter Webb Galleries, Auckland

2002
Domes, City Art, Christchurch

1994
Steps and Stages, Jonathan Jensen Gallery, Christchurch

1993
New Work, Jonathan Jensen Gallery, Christchurch

1992
Luba Bilu Gallery, Melbourne, Australia
Jonathan Jensen Gallery, Christchurch
Infomuse Gallery, Tokyo, Japan

1991
Jonathan Jensen Gallery, Christchurch
Sue Crockford Gallery, Auckland

1990
Sue Crockford Gallery, Auckland
Jonathan Jensen Gallery, Christchurch
Luba Bilu Gallery, Melbourne, Australia

1989
Get the Picture, National Art Gallery, Wellington

1988
Sue Crockford Gallery, Auckland
Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney, Australia

1987
Sue Crockford Gallery, Auckland
Site Related Work 1981-87, Centre For Contemporary Art, Hamilton

1986
Janne Land Gallery, Wellington
Overhead Hardware, Brooke- Gifford Gallery, Christchurch

1985
Mirrors, Bosshard Gallery, Dunedin
New Wall Works, Denis Cohn Gallery, Auckland

1984
Sunset Constructions, Denis Cohn Gallery, Auckland
Rock Constructions, Brooke-Gifford Gallery, Dunedin

1982
Holes, Robinson Brooker Gallery, Christchurch
Land Escapes, Denis Cohn Gallery, Auckland

1981
Echo, Christchurch Arts Centre, Christchurch
Here and There, Denis Cohn Gallery, Auckland
Escapes, Peter McLeavy Gallery, Wellington
Vanishing Points, Auckland City Art Gallery, Auckland Central
Reflections, National Art Gallery, Wellington
Boundaries, Brooke-Gifford Gallery, Christchurch

1980
Recent Series, Denis Cohn Gallery, Auckland
Here and There, New Zealand Chancellery, Washington DC, U.S.A

1979
Interiors, Elva Bett Gallery, Wellington
Order/Chaos, Bosshard Gallery, Dunedin
Seascape, Robert McDougall Art Gallery, Christchurch

1978
House Alterations, Brooke-Gifford Gallery, Christchurch
3 Black Holes, CSA Gallery, Christchurch

1972 -73
Pinacotheca Gallery, Melbourne, Australia

SELECTED COMMISSIONS & INSTALLATIONS

2014
Toss, 2014, Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington
Spires, Latimer Square, Christchurch

2012
Feather From Afar, International Finance Centre, Pudong, Shanghai

2010
Feather and Ripples, Christchurch City Council Building, Christchurch
Sky Lens, Cashel Mall, Christchurch
Cubes, St. Andrew’s College, Christchurch

2007
Feather, Two Paddocks Winery, Central Otago

2006
Anchor, Victoria Point, Docklands, Melbourne, Australia
Wellsphere, Gouldon Square, Rochdale Road, Manchester

2005
Bomber Command War Memorial sculpture, Canberra, Australia

2003
Kate Edger Information Commons, University of Auckland, Auckland

2001
Chalice, Cathedral Square, Christchurch

2000
Feathers and Skies, Stadium Australia, Sydney, Australia

1990
Ferns, Civic Square, Wellington
Majestic Centre, Wellington

AWARDS

2006
Antarctica Invited Artist Programme, Creative New Zealand

2004
Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit

2003
Laureate Award, New Zealand Arts Foundation

1985
Awarded Queen Elizabeth 2 Arts Council Establishment Grant

1980
Awarded Queen Elizabeth 2 Arts Council Travel Grant

1972
Awarded Queen Elizabeth 2 Arts Council Grant

COLLECTIONS

University of Auckland Art Collection, Auckland
Lincoln University Art Collection, Canterbury
Christchurch Art Gallery, Christchurch
Auckland Art Gallery, Auckland
Allan Gibbs Collection, New Zealand
Wellington City Council Art Collection, Wellington
Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington
Wellington Sculpture Trust, Wellington