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When the Lighthouse Fails - Craig Bluett & Wendy Murphy

When the Lighthouse Fails - Craig Bluett & Wendy Murphy

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  • Wed 15 Jun ’16, 10:30am – 4:30pm
  • Thu 16 Jun ’16, 10:30am – 4:30pm
  • Fri 17 Jun ’16, 10:30am – 4:30pm
  • Sat 18 Jun ’16, 1:00pm – 4:00pm
  • Sun 19 Jun ’16, 1:00pm – 4:00pm
  • View all sessions


Millennium Public Art Gallery, Corner of Seymour and Alfred Streets, Blenheim


All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Free Admission

Related Artists:


"Our joint exhibition was inspired by a moving & poignant account, The High Way, by Picton writer Margaret Bremner, about the experiences of men from remote parts of the Marlborough Sounds enlisting to serve in the First World War. The exhibition’s title, When the Lighthouse Fails, came from a song from an Indie Country Rock Group that Craig heard on the radio one day. The title stands for when the moral compass runs askew and humanity disappears, as occurs during war. The title is also appropriate for the theme of the Sounds. Our work is a response to what these men may have faced rather than a literal history."

Black Wall- a series of intaglio prints: "This series of works is my envisaged documentation of the imagined sensory experiences faced during war-time; the sound, sight, smell, feel. Inspired by Margaret Bremner’s account of men who left the Marlborough Sounds to fight in the trenches of the Western Front during the last years of the First World War.

Included is the chaos of dislocated plant and animal fragments, bacteria, indiscernible chemical particles all randomly associated. Wendy Murphy is a printmaker who lives and works in Marlborough. Originally from Wellington, she studied for three years under the late New Zealand printmaker, John Drawbridge. A graduate of Wellington Design School, she has continued with her own printmaking practice exhibiting nationally and internationally. As an art educator, she has taught in a wide range of art institutions including tertiary and secondary." - Wendy Murphy – Artist’s Statement

"Memorial 1-9, Drawings and unique subtractive monoprints. Margaret Bremner’s writing evoked powerful emotional imagery for me about the personal struggles these men were to face. My theme focuses on: Man’s struggle with the elements and with their own self-will for survival.

The heavy brooding skies and seas I have shown in these works are metaphors for the man-made storm these men were soon to enter. Although tough and physical, these men would still have been ill-prepared for the enormous challenges that faced them. The environment would have been alien and dangerous in ways they could not have imagined. Their endurance would have been tested daily." - Craig Bluett – Artist’s Statement

Craig Bluett is a painter and printmaker based in Blenheim, Marlborough. He is a graduate of Otago School of Fine Arts where he specialised in Printmaking. He has taught art in various media extensively at secondary and tertiary level, and explores a number of innovative techniques in his work.

His painterly approach crosses over into his printmaking, especially when using a subtractive technique which allows him to scratch or brush into the ink before printing to create a sense of layering of ideas as well as image. He has shown nationally and internationally and was shortlisted in the Gulan International Print Biennial in China and The Parkin Drawing Prize, New Zealand’s premier prize for drawing. His prints are in collections in Germany, U.S.A., New Zealand and Australia.

Images: Wendy Murphy, Black Wall I, intaglio print, 2016
Craig Bluett, Memorial I, unique subtractive monoprint, 2016

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