Denis O’Connor

The Tangler

October 23 – November 22, 2008


Two Rooms introduces Chapter 1. in a cycle of three solo exhibitions by Denis O’Connor. After nearly forty years of commitment to his art O’Connor opens the door into the private territory of studio practice. Artists surrender to laborious routines often surrounded by mounds of relics and found objects. These are transformed out of chaos through a process that appears to outsiders as devotion to a muse-like-no-other.

As our guide to the routines and endeavours of art making O’Connor has created The Tangler, an artist-figure who can assume many roles from the comic to the tragic. The Tangler is devoted to particular vows and strange muses. He reconciles divided parties and disputed landscapes. His role is to arbitrate, broker, and find common ground.

In Irish traditions The Tangler has an unofficial designation at Horse Fairs, and enters a transaction once a prospective buyer has wandered off shaking his head…
…Sure I can make the seller see reason… and then proceeds to fulfil this task.

Denis O’Connor’s new project is an illustrated guide to the obsessive fables and mysterious impulses that play out within the confines of the studio and our host is The Tangler.

Denis O’Connor, one of New Zealand’s most established sculptors, has work represented in all our major public collections, and has received many prestigious public commissions. Since What the Roof Dreamt was exhibited last year at Two Rooms and City Gallery, Wellington, O’Connor’s sculptures held in the collections of Auckland and Christchurch Art Galleries, have been featured in curated exhibitions. In addition Auckland University Press commissioned a work for the cover of Auckland poet Bob Orr’s next book of poems Calypso.

In June/July 2008 O’Connor was invited to be part of Ábhar agus Meon/Materials and Mentalities. This international contemporary art exhibition was Ireland’s hosting of the Sixth World Archaeological Congress at University College Dublin.
He was also the recipient of a travel award from The Ireland Fund of New Zealand.

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