In two worlds by Alessia Belsito-Riera
Across the River, an exhibition by renowned artist Max Gimblett, is currently on display at Page Galleries until the 4th of March.
Born in Auckland Tāmaki Makaurau in 1935, Gimblett has been a New York-based artist since the 1970s and has had countless exhibitions both locally and internationally. The Getty Research Institute, cited as one of his most recent collectors, has acquired 250 of his artist books.
Page Galleries says Gimblett’s practice encompasses a “complex synthesis of influences as varied as Abstract Expressionism, Modernism, Eastern and Western spirituality, Jungian psychology, and ancient cultures.” He is deeply intrigued and influenced by the connotations of objects and symbols, exploring their multiplicity and historical contextualisation. He is particularly drawn to the quatrefoil, which has been seen in both Western and Eastern religions since pre-Christian times, and which frequently features throughout his work.
Page Galleries describes Across the River as depicting the “geographical distance between the United States and Aotearoa, and the experience of both physically and psychically navigating between these two places.” In his youth, Gimblett attributed influence to author Ernest Hemingway, with this exhibition considered an homage to Hemingway’s Across the River and Into the Trees. Page Galleries offers that “Hemingway’s prose on love and death [resonated] with the young artist’s own creative endeavour and his lifelong pursuit to articulate truth and humanity through his visual practice.”