Neal Palmer | Twenty Two
“At the beginning of this year I was the fortunate recipient of the inaugural Eden Arts Trust Karekare House artist in residence for 6 weeks of artistic development. During my time there I took advantage this rarest of opportunities to push into some new territory, experimenting with new ideas, methods and materials.
As part of that process of moving forward, I first reviewed the body of work I’ve created over the last twenty-plus years of full time art production. Since my first exhibition in 1998 I’ve had 21 solo shows.
Looking back there are those paintings that really stand out for me like the Pohutukawa leaf and Magnolia on silver pieces. Also very evident are the major themes and subjects I’ve repeatedly returned to, for example the constantly evolving flax leaf works. For this, my 22nd solo exhibition, I’ve included paintings from my personal archive as well as new works, a large piece called ‘Full Circle’ and a small series of almost abstract flax works that are simultaneously looking back and forward.
Within my chosen botanical subjects, the themes that have occupied me such as playing with form and scale, the effects of lighting, surface quality vs the illusion of depth, complexity vs simplicity are all in evidence in this show.
Twenty Two. It feels like a coming of age, a good point to reflect as I move on to the next phase of my artistic journey”