Oliver Cain | Relatively Fruity
24 Sept – 13 Oct
Föenander Galleries is proud to present Oliver Cain’s debut Exhibition: Relatively Fruity. Cain is an emerging artist who won four awards over a five month period in 2019, all before he graduating from Unitec in February 2020. Cain’s exquisitely crafted works, with their wit and playfulness, gently touch on confronting and challenging issues around sexuality, gender and identity. He pushes ideas and feelings around using different materials, adding a more personal and tactile experience to his work. Cain’s objects are high-spirited and seemingly light-hearted with serious undertones. He enjoys pushing the viewer into an uncomfortable space but not over the edge – wanting them to experience something different or to simply step back and to think about a topic in a different light.
“Every once in a while, you are confronted with artworks that possess a strangely playful but vital presence. The architect of this frivolous oeuvre is Oliver Cain, an English born New Zealand artist. His artworks, subverted linguistic paintings, ceramic sculptures and installations, bear a certain physicality and push the boundaries between conceptualism and post-pop art. The creative process behind Cain’s artworks is the most important thing and therefore his artworks can be made of anything and take any form. Appropriated everyday objects transform stereotypes, and art historical references become subverted. As proud member of the queer community, the artist uses his work to examine, question and criticize the relationships between gender, sexuality and societies’ misconceptions about those themes. But, despite what it might look like to the contemporary spectator, a purely queer reading of the work would be misguided. There is a universal profundity at play revealing itself slowly for those willing to look and feel.” Arthur Buerms