Nicholas Burry is a painter based in Wellington, creating from an independent studio practice. His work has a preoccupation with the isolated figure, wandering exiles and trespassers. At times tersely ironic, often highly sentimental. 
This particular offering comprises paintings drawing upon different fascinations and observations from the past year. The show is not strictly thematic, more eclectic in its approach. 
The artist sincerely hopes you enjoy the show and thanks you for your time. 
The following is a supplementary text for your reading pleasure
Nicholas Burry: I’m sorry I’m late, I'm almost never late, I really pride myself on punctuality, I think it's important, it's a recognition of someone else's reality.
Ghost (Device): Is that so?

NB: Well it's about a recognition of their limited time you know. The solipsist is never late. You know I thought about that alot when I was painting. About how someone would take time out of their day to come see them. It's a big responsibility, other people's time.  
G: A bit presumptuous perhaps?
NB: Ha maybe so, but anyway I thought about it.
G: Hypothetically someone comes, what do you have to show for yourself? 
Nb: Well it's a collection of paintings created in the last 6 months or so, they come from a few different fascinations, some thoughts and feelings that haunted me. You know when I was given the show I started thinking about some big idea that the work would revolve around, something big and conceptual. But the more I tried that, the more disingenuous I started feeling. 
G: Not everyone has big ideas.
NB: Yeah I guess not. I wonder if painting is really good for that even. You know cause it’s just these still moments, you can imply a before and after but it’s really limited. It’s not a durantional experience like books or film are, so it’s hard to depict something intellectual. 
But painting has this incredible ability to represent the emotional reality of a scene. I think it's a more authentic documentation of our experience of reality in that way. It’s true that the eye operates in a similar fashion to a camera lens, but we don’t see with our eye, but rather in our heads. A sort of mosaic of associations and symbols. I think that’s why we find dreams so life-like, even in the complete absence of optical information. I'd love for my paintings to look like memories.
G: Some of these works were painted from photographs, so the works then are not emotional realities of scenes but rather the emotional reality of looking upon images of the scenes? You create a polemic, distancing yourself from the camera, but it's an essential part of your practice. 
NB: Yes, I go too far, it’s more an aspirational goal than a statement on the process. I have a stack of images in my studio that are invaluable to me. Some I’ve taken, others were given and some were found. They’re good jumping off points, I like that they give a gravity to my paintings, but I'm always careful not to work in the mode of a stenographer. Every input leaves its mark, and there's something dead about photographs, they’re memorials.  
G: Despite what you say about conceptual art and painting there are recurring themes in this collection, especially in the the three of the little bald men on a flat plain, or the figurative works in what looks like shop interiors. 
NB: It's true, I’ve always been a liar. Yes there are some recurring ideas. Let's talk about the men on the beach first, then move onto the CCTV ones. 
G: Dessert first.
NB: Well those beach scenes, you know it's really a formal thing. It's about an economy of storytelling. I've been obsessed with Goya’s painting of the dog's head in the sand. You know there's really nothing there, it's so vague, but I think there’s so much encoded in that image. So I wanted to make my own unfortunate dogs. I wanted to create these strange dramas about people struggling with the world. So there's an intertextual aspect to them, explicitly with the man burying his dog. But also the other image of the man pulling at something outside of the field of view, I was thinking about the limitations of painting. But really that's just icing, for me the emotional element is the main course. 
G: I can understand those flood plains as a sort of ‘nowhere’ to stage your dramas. The emptiness makes every inclusion significant. 
NB: Yeah it's a void, like in the way a stage is.
In regards to the cctv ones; there's an expectation when you look at cctv, we are conditioned to expect a truck to come flying in and flatten everyone, or a robbery to occur. The photos I used are of suspected shoplifters, and are defined by that categorization. But really the images are all mundane, people shopping or just standing around. I found something beautiful in the aerial perspective. The strange way colour and form were described by the cameras. There was also something terribly lonely about the figures as well. They always look so cold, Sellotaped to shop windows, isolated like the condemned in the pillory. I was really captured by these images. 
G: Any last words mister Burry?
NB: I’ve said enough, too much perhaps, I don't want to give it all away. But I do want to offer my sincerest gratitude to anyone who comes to the show and engages with the work. It's a long road you know, many hours alone in a dark room, trying to get at something, and now it's here. They were made to be seen.

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