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Art Gallery announces appointment of senior curator

13 August 2007

Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu has appointed Justin Paton as its senior curator.

Paton, who has been curator of contemporary art at Dunedin Public Art Gallery since 1999, joins the Christchurch gallery in late October.

Gallery Director Jenny Harper says she is delighted with the appointment.

"Justin is a dynamic and innovative thinker and experienced art writer and we are very much looking forward to having him join the team in Christchurch."

From 1999 to 2005, he was editor of the journal of arts and letters Landfall. He is a Governor of the New Zealand Arts Foundation and a contributing editor of Art and Australia.

Recent curatorial projects include The Secret Life of Paint and Reboot: The Jim Barr and Mary Barr Collection exhibitions.

He is widely published as an art critic and has written books on artists including Australian artist, Ricky Swallow, and New Zealanders Anne Noble, Ronnie van Hout, Michael Parekowhai and Jude Rae.

Paton is also the author of Jeffrey Harris (Dunedin Public Art Gallery and Victoria University Press), which was a finalist in the 2006 Montana New Zealand Book Awards, and How to Look at a Painting (Awa Press), a category winner in the same awards.

Most recently, he collaborated with the Christchurch Art Gallery with the exhibition and accompanying catalogue, Julia Morison: A Loop Around a Loop. The book was a finalist in the 2007 Montana Book Awards.

Paton says throughout the country you can feel the excitement about what the Christchurch Art Gallery is up to and the expectation about where it might head in the near future.

"There's a great team, and a real commitment to the people that make art and the people that love to look at it. Those are dream conditions for any curator. It's terrific to be coming back to the city and joining such an impressive team at a moment when so much is possible."

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