Public Art Talk III Peter Trevelyan

Public Art Talk III with Peter Trevelyan, June 2017

On Thursday 29 June 2017 we held our third Public Art Talk (PAT III) with Peter Trevelyan, in collaboration with Alison Bartley at Bartley + Company Art.

About 25 people joined us to hear Peter articulately discuss the evolution of his art practice, from his early sculptural works created as a student at Ilam in 2000, through his PHD at Massey University in 2014, to his current practice — the three-dimensional exploration of two dimensional media.

Peter showed us many examples of his works which are predominantly made from fine 0.5mm pencil leads, although occasionally extending to other tools of drawing: rulers, paper and set squares, His works are diverse in scale and form, from very simple small structures to the incredibly complex, intricate and sometimes incomprehensible; the larger pencil lead and ruler sculptures seem to defy gravity and incite a sense of vertigo.

His practice is informed by the enduring techniques of drawing and historical studies of perspective, which he spoke about during the talk.

Peter was our second 4 Plinths Sculpture Award winner with his work Mimetic Brotherhood in 2010 and during his talk Peter discussed how around this time he made a breakthrough with his practice — taking the pencil lead off the paper for the first time and creating a three-dimensional form. He feels that with this new method of making he has found the perfect medium for the realisation of his ideas.

When asked if he would consider making more public works, Peter acknowledged that while public art works have a much wider audience then other types of art they also require a different type of consideration. Public works need to take into account so many more factors: engineering, consents, weather, degradation, public interaction or vandalism etc. For now, Peter is happy working within the known confines of the gallery examining his media further and further, although we hope that one day he might again stretch his practice to the larger outdoor arena.