Superimpression, 2019 (1974)

Between 1974 and 1976 I produced a series of performance/ installations using a fictional business group called E-Z-Gro. ‘Superimpression’ was typical of these and was devised to give a glimpse into E-Z-Gro’s industrial process while soliciting the support of visitors at the same time. I made the work while teaching in the sculpture department at the university of Auckland’s Elam School of Art and later in the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki.

In 2018-19 the gallery re-staged ‘Superimpression’ as part of its exhibition ‘GROUNDSWELL: Avant Garde Auckland 1971-79’ the work’s first public airing in over forty years. The curator, Natasha Conland went to considerable lengths in her search for authenticity, persuading one of the original performers, Geoff Chapple to undertake his role again. Natasha also had several components re-engineered to avoid damage to the originals. This use of replicas raises interesting questions of authenticity and status, which also informed the discussions with Geoff over how closely the work should follow the original performance and whether it could reflect the changes in corporate attitudes and public reception.

The black and white photographs by Bryony Dalefield are from the original 1974 production with Kieran Lyons, Geoff Chapple, Graham Brett, my apologies to the fourth performer whose name has disappeared from my notes of the time. The coloured images from 2019 are by Natasha Conland with the final four images having been sent to me by Megan Jenkinson.

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