Donna Marie Patterson
Donna is currently studying at the University of Canterbury’s Ilam School of Fine Arts and has received numerous scholarships and awards for her paintings and sculptures since she began her professional art practice in 2013. Her practice investigates her deep personal relationship with New Zealand’s landscapes and environment. This interest is primarily centred on West Coast rivers, forests, and glaciers. Her works contain ecological references, which raise questions concerning the fragility of this environment and the unease about mans’ impact within these environments. For example the lush rainforest environment of The Coast is strongly acknowledged in her works, as she intends to remind viewers that water is the essence of all ecology. Her sculptures and drawings of 2016 provide the viewer a collection of stilled fragments, timelessly suspended, extracted from the rhythm and beat of this natural world.
"Artworks, cultural practices, ideas and values are actively signalling the fact that the geologic is a force in contemporary life. There seems to be a growing recognition that the geologic, both as a material dynamic and as a preoccupation, shapes the now in ever more direct and urgent ways, through geologic forces such as deep time, slow accumulations and metamorphoses of the world’s materiality, tectonic plate movements, erosion and displacement of landforms, dramatic earth reshaping events, geo-bio interactions. These forces are to be reckoned with existentially, creatively, and pragmatically as humans work to meet the fact that our species is both vulnerable to geologic forces and also has become a geologic force on the planet. You could say the geologic has become a condition of contemporaneity. One definition of contemporary art is created within the conditions of contemporaneity. As if embodying that definition, artists and other cultural producers are making work within the geologic as a condition of our present time. As a contemporary artist I have begun to locate my work primarily within the situation of the geologic-within the jostling and unstable physical, social, political, and economic situations that arise from and act back upon geologic materiality’s and forces. The Southern Alps geological and glacial formations are acknowledged in my artworks, as they provide strong influences, inspirations, motivations and source material. This results in a growing body of aesthetic drawings and artworks that plumb the geologic depth of the now."