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Planetspore was created from layers of Resene paint

Rohan Wealleans

Notorious New Zealand Waikato Art Award (2003)-winning artist Rohan Wealleans works on the tactile knife-edge of painting, redefining the medium. Rohan developed the concept of a 2.5 metre high paint ball for the Work it. component (curated by Tobias Berger and Tessa Giblin of Artspace, Auckland) for SCAPE Biennial 04.

Rohan pushes the painterly expressionist tradition of Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning to its limits and in doing so reflects on primal and instinctive in art, making sculptural paintings with knives and mannequin busts. His marble-like monumental and simultaneously delicate millifiori-like works stimulate a discussion between objects and painting, and challenges the stereotypical heroic sculptor to a brawl on a painter’s turf.

He writes:

“Over the past five years I have been working with Resene paints, using hundreds of litres, pushing it to its limit to see what I can do with it. It is amazing stuff and very versatile. I have used it in many different ways. I have layered up panels with up to one hundred layers of paint and carved back into it to make paintings. I have painted it on windows and peeled it off to form sheets which can be rolled and carved into solid paint replicas of real objects like cans, fruit, or a whole fish. I have used it to make beautiful stones which I have turned into jewellery. I have used Resene paint to make an entire wearable outfit for a tribal woman. I have even created an entire Pacific island culture through Resene paints. Resene paints are the best paints I have ever used, you can do just about anything with them.

“For this project, my biggest project to date, I have made a giant paint sculpture. The process is simple; carve the shape of the sculpture out of polystyrene, cover with fibreglass and then put as many layers of Resene paint possible on the structure in the time allowed, then carve into the paint revealing the many layers beneath the surface.”

Of this work, curators Berger and Gibblin write:

“Whether this work is read as a ‘birth’, squeezed out of the land it sits on, or a sculptural ‘stone’, gathering moss, he activates a discussion between objects and painting, and challenges the physical brawn of sculptural crusaders to a round in the ring of a painter.”

Article from eScape newsletter – biennial 04.


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A wide range of artists are using Resene paints in their work, on everything from interior paintings to tactile artworks and mural masterpieces.

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