Artist gets a foot in the door
Saturday morning saw the installation of a new art work at the Ashburton Art Gallery as Regan Gentry popped by to add to his ongoing project Foot in the Door.
Gentry is a Wellington-based sculptor and artist whose work Canterbury residents may recognise from Christchurch’s Flour Power a 13-metre-tall streetlight installation which resembles a sheaf of wheat on Colombo Street. Not far from that work, on Tuam and High Streets, a newer sculpture Woods from the Trees depicts three eight-metre tall rimu trees crafted from reclaimed timber from homes demolished after the Christchurch earthquakes.
The Foot in the Door project, which Gentry started in 2004, is a playful take on the cliché and involves Gentry installing one foot of ruler or tape measure into the front door of galleries he visits around New Zealand, Australia and beyond. Other venues involved include Te Papa Tongarewa (Wellington), the Dunedin Public Art Gallery, the Aigantighe Art Gallery (Timaru) and the Eastern Southland Gallery in Gore.
The previous Ashburton Art Gallery on Baring Square also had a Foot in the Door art work. It was installed inside the post slot of the main doors to the Gallery and is likely to have escaped the attention of most visitors to the Gallery. Indeed, it turned out that many of the staff were not aware of the work until they were advised by previous curator Kathryn Mitchell just prior to the building’s demise.
Because the Gallery’s former building was recently demolished, we approached Regan to come back and make his mark in our current building. See if you can find it next time you visit.
For more information, visit regangentry.com/featured/foot-in-the-door
The old and the new.
L | Regan Gentry, Foot – Ashburton Art Gallery, measuring tape, 2005
R | Regan Gentry, Foot – Ashburton Art Gallery II, measuring tape, 2020