Ever since we heard the news, many of us have been sadly
anticipating the eventual closure of Mercury Plaza for the
development of the City Rail Link. It has been a popular food
destination over the last few decades, with historic ties to the
Chinese community; the owners being some of the original Chinese
fruit and vegetable shop owners on Karangahape Road.
Much like how this beloved food court has brought warmth and
comfort to our bellies, we aim to use the transitional space to
feed the creative cravings of the community by curating an art
exhibition featuring local NZ-Chinese artists. We are lucky enough
to be able to transform two major areas of Mercury Plaza - a giant
wall by the entrance and the maze-like ramp access next to New Gum
We hope the show can act as a platform for underrepresented
creative voices. There is also a need to challenge the
accessibility of traditional exhibition spaces, democratising the
display of art and thus bringing together visitors even more
diverse than the typical gallery audience and the eclectic crowd of
K Road food lovers.
Help us celebrate this iconic landmark rich with culture and
fascinating individual stories, and see it evolve through the
unique lens of local artists who will be exploring the theme of
'Origins and New Beginnings'.
Artists will be curated based on their proposals to apply their
conceptual perspective to several art forms.
HOW YOUR DONATIONS WILL
We have set our target at $3000 to ensure a higher chance of
funding success. This is the bare minimum we need in order for the
show to go ahead, as it will support artists with the production of
their work and supply the equipment and materials needed for the
exhibition (e.g. large format printing, sculptural work).
We are a team of two, volunteering our personal time to produce
the show ourselves to keep costs low. That means we are responsible
for everything from coordinating artists and installation to event
planning and media coverage.
We aim to offer a high quality and memorable show; ideally we
would like to raise an extra $2500 to cover additional artist
contributions, promotional costs and our own wages as producers,
which would put our total target at $5500.
Your donations would ensure that everyone in the team receives
fair compensation for their work, which is a practice that we are
passionate about but that is often neglected in this field,
especially for those starting out in their career.
WHO WE ARE
Mercury Plaza: Origins + New Beginnings is being produced and
curated by Joni Lee and Jia Luo. The idea for the exhibition has
developed around their wish to pay homage to an iconic space like
Mercury Plaza, and also celebrate a new beginning in the area. This
also ties in with the opportunity to offer local emerging Chinese
artists a platform to express their personal beliefs, origin
stories and visions for the future.
JONI is a part-time piñata
maker with an interest in interactive art. He comes from a
background of dual cultural influences and wishes to see more art
by Asian diaspora within the local NZ context. It is through
contributing to community projects that he aims to illuminate the
experiences of navigating life in a cultural melting pot.
JIA holds a Bachelor of
Fine Arts from Elam and bases her creative practice in public art
and placemaking. She is dedicated to making art accessible for
everyone, and to encouraging society to value the arts through
creative interventions in public spaces. Her most recent community
project involves a dog obstacle course built from scratch in Basque
Park, Eden Terrace for Auckland Placemaking Week.
Instagram - for updates and
behind the scenes goodness!
2 Weeks to go!
3 DAYS AGO
We're half way there! A big big THANK YOU to our donors, we appreciate your generosity so much! Rest assured we're working hard to bring you an awesome show.
Our Boosted campaign closes in two weeks and we must reach our target before the art can be produced. We want to give artists and audiences alike the chance to connect with this space before it disappears. Help us get there by continuing to spread the word!
We've been blown away by the quality of artist submissions and have had a tough time narrowing them down. We can't wait for you to meet our diverse group of exhibiting artists, so keep an eye out for their introductions on Instagram.
In the mean time, here is our talented lineup:
Min Huey Pon
Hold tight for our next update!
- Joni and Jia