by Gregor Kregar for SCAPE Public Art Season 2017
This mirror polished stainless steel T-Rex is both too small to be 1:1 scale and too giant to be an actual toy. Its in-betweenness invites us to consider its symbolic potential, and how it came into being.
Dinosaurs, long extinct creatures, hold a prominent place in popular culture via advertising, movies, toys, gaming and museum displays. They are rife in the imaginations of children, but have also been used within corporate and political cultures to symbolise dominance, power and longevity. Auckland-based Kregar has long been captivated by how subtle changes in scale, form and materiality can influence our understanding of a sculptural object.
Kregar is also interested in the systems of production and distribution at play in our material world, and the political and economic infrastructures that drive them. Here, small plastic toy dinosaurs have been enlarged and cast in stainless steel and mirror-polished, ensuring that the T-Rex reflects all of its current urban habitat. The reference to the Terminator series of films further complicates our understanding of time, given the films’ focus on a dystopian future, where messengers from the future are sent to warn humanity, and killer assassin robots are sent to stop them.
Gregor Kregar was born in 1972 in Ljubljana, Slovenia. He lives in Auckland, New Zealand.
“My work is not confined to any single medium or material. In my sculptural practice I often combine a wide variety of materials such as stainless steel, plastic, cardboard, ceramics, glass, video and photography. I utilize familiar subject matters such as the human figure, body parts, television sets, bottles, inorganic rubbish and animals.
I am interested in how the familiar subject can be represented in a way that displaces the original meaning and imbues the subject with new and unfamiliar meanings. My work deals with issues of ambiguity and the uncanny, yet it is strongly connected to the social, economical and political environment I live in.”