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Quirky, strange, charming

Ursula Macfarlane’s ‘Quirks and Charming Strangeness’ art exhibition at Heart of Arts in Carterton. PHOTO/EMILY IRELAND

 

EMILY IRELAND

Ursula Macfarlane may be very technically minded – but her artwork tells a different story.

With a degree in mathematics, and a long career in the computer industry, Macfarlane has used this background, and her barmy sense of humour, to build her artistry – easily recognisable by a trademark combination of quirky and experimental ideas mixed with technical skill.

Her show ‘Quirks and Charming Strangeness’ launched last week at Heart of Arts in Carterton.

The exhibition title is a play on the name given to the physics particles Quarks and their components.

In fact, much of what Macfarlane creates through her art is based on her lifelong love of science and space and especially the challenge of depicting that work in non-standard ways.

Some key pieces in her exhibition are landscapes of Castlepoint beach, incorporating themes of black and white and using a folded canvas as a sort of canvas revealing the two differently saturated worlds.

She moved from England to New Zealand 22 years ago, and shifted to Wairarapa about three years ago.

“Because I’m living here now, I thought I would do a few landmarks.

“But I’m not one to just follow sheep.

“With the folding curtain I wanted to show that in each moment, there’s more than one way of seeing things. I thought, how the heck do I paint that?

“I really enjoy the challenge.”

This is Macfarlane’s first solo exhibition in the Wairarapa, and she hopes that there is something for everyone to enjoy.

“I want people to enjoy my art.

“In the rest of my life, I’m involved with environmental and social justice issues, and that gets quite dark and depressing, so doing stuff like this is there for people to enjoy.”

‘Quirks and Charming Strangeness’ will run at Heart of Arts in Carterton until March 14.

 

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Emily Ireland
Emily Ireland
Emily Ireland is Wairarapa’s Local Democracy Reporter, a Public Interest Journalism role funded through NZ On Air. Emily has worked at the Wairarapa Times-Age for seven years and has a keen interest in council decision-making and transparency.

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