O, I, M, I
By Ben Pearce for SCAPE Public Art Season 2018
Ben Pearce, based in Hastings, has over the last decade pursued a focused investigation of sculptural form, working in wood, stone, metal and found objects. For SCAPE he has produced a suite of four works that utilise elements or remnants of the construction industry (for example: an offcut from a steel ‘I’ beam, a sliver of a steel pipe, sheet steel) and refines them, exploring their potential to shift from one form of ‘vocabulary’ (construction related) into another (that of sculptural forms), while also referencing written language. We have a clutch of vowels which are found in both English and Te Reo.
His works explore aspects of memory, and seek to materialise emotional states. This transmutation of inner states into three-dimensional forms has included works that relate to geological forms, objects that resonate with experiences from childhood, precarious built architecture and the human brain. His aesthetic has a noticeable delicacy, combined with a strong tactile sensitivity to material qualities.
Ben Pearce completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2003 majoring in Sculpture at Whanganui’s Quay School of Fine Arts and has exhibited regularly in New Zealand and Australia since. His work has featured in shows discussing sculpture in New Zealand at City Gallery Wellington, Sarjeant Gallery, Suter Gallery and Whakatane Gallery. He has work held in public and private collections. His work Great Grandfather Clock won the 2009 Waikato Youth Award. His work Mergar won the Molly Morpeth Canaday Award in 2014 and in 2016 Stone Age Eight Gauge won the Number 8 Wire Award.