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A New Form Of Retail Experience

30 January 2003

Exposing visitors to high quality original art works, created by New Zealanders, will be the underlying theme of the Christchurch Art Gallery's new retail outlet.

Form Gallery, a leading local gallery, previously sited at the corner of Cathedral Square and Chancery Lane, will open new premises on the ground floor of the Christchurch Art Gallery. The retail space, designed with Gallery architects, The Buchan Group, will reflect the style and materials found throughout the facility.

Artist and Form Gallery owner, Koji Miyazaki, who has widely exhibited his contemporary jewellery pieces, says the quality and originality of the works on offer will set the Christchurch Art Gallery apart from other arts institutions.

"Internationally, many galleries and museums have retail spaces that sell a mix of things from souvenirs and mass-produced items to original works," says Koji Miyazaki.

"For us it is important to only exhibit quality pieces of three-dimensional artwork, representing the unique creative expression of individual artists."

Form Gallery, which Mr Miyazaki established nine years ago, exhibits and sells a range of jewellery, ceramics, hand-blown and cast glass, and other examples of object art created by artists from around New Zealand.

The work on sale is mostly from established artists but Koji Miyazaki says the Gallery is always on the look out for anything exceptional. Form Gallery holds between eight and ten group and solo exhibitions each year, selling both locally and internationally.

Koji Miyazaki says that although it is difficult to make a living as an artist in New Zealand, almost a decade of experience has taught him the value of striking a balance between the artistic and the commercial.

"The artists we exhibit show the passion for what they are doing through their work, rather than producing something to sell or follow a trend. It's what makes their work so individual and timeless."

Form Gallery is currently consulting with Creative New Zealand on concepts for developing a wider audience for craft and object art, something Koji Miyazaki feels strongly about.

"Creating more opportunities to educate patrons of the arts while also finding new ways to reach a wider audience should be a major part of the approach."

Working alongside the Gallery, Koji Miyazaki hopes to create greater awareness by introducing New Zealand art to new audiences.

"I believe this is a great opportunity for Gallery visitors to view other examples of contemporary New Zealand art; to understand more about the vision, techniques and processes of contemporary artists and hence appreciate artists' original work."

For further information:

Koji Miyazaki
Form Gallery
03 377 1211

Jo Scully or Gerard Blank
Glass Tower Strategic Communications
03 365 1445 or 0275 384 069

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