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Title

Soon, the tide will turn

February 2021

Artist

Robin White

New Zealand

1946 –

Alternate image of Soon, the tide will turn by Robin White
Alternate image of Soon, the tide will turn by Robin White
Alternate image of Soon, the tide will turn by Robin White
Alternate image of Soon, the tide will turn by Robin White
Alternate image of Soon, the tide will turn by Robin White
  • Details

    Date
    February 2021
    Media category
    Textile
    Materials used
    barkcloth (masi), earth pigment, soot, plant-based liquid medium
    Dimensions
    202.0 x 218.0 cm
    Signature & date

    Signed l.l. corner, "RW". Not dated.

    Credit
    Purchased with funds provided by the Friends of New Zealand Art Fund and the Don Mitchell Bequest 2021
    Location
    Not on display
    Accession number
    197.2021
    Copyright
    © Robin White

    Reproduction requests

    Artist information
    Robin White

    Works in the collection

    2

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  • About

    One of Aotearoa New Zealand’s most distinguished artists, Robin White created Soon, the tide will come as part of an extraordinary body of work in response to Henri Matisse for the Art Gallery’s 2021 Matisse Alive program. White has long admired Matisse’s domestic interiors and the way he guides viewers through complex spaces towards windows, doors and thresholds. She is also fascinated, as an artist who lived for 17 years in the island nation of Kiribati in the central Pacific Ocean, by Matisse’s 1930 trip to Tahiti. Immersing herself in Matisse’s recollections of the journey, White created a series of interiors which welcome Matisse back to a Pacific realm and initiate imaginary conversations.

    Many people, places, times, memories and presences coexist in this dreamlike interior. The shoes belong to Matisse. The siapo-lined room is from Robert Louis Stevenson’s home Villa Vailima in Samoa. The chaise longue belonged to White’s long-time art dealer, the late Peter McLeavey, whose words, describing an emerging Pacific awareness in New Zealand, give the work its title. The power of this masi derives not just from the objects but the way they are orchestrated. Two lamps, a shell from Kiribati, and a bottle of COVID-era hand sanitiser form a modern-day altarpiece, centred on the mirror that White recalls looking into wishfully as a child in her parents’ bedroom.

    Appropriately, in this painting about departed presences, the mirror holds no human reflection. The doorway seen within it could also be the dark portal of a black painted barkcloth, used for ceremonial occasions such as funerals, called a ngatu’uli

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 2 exhibitions

Other works by Robin White