Julian Dashper, Artist

This is one of the installations in our collection. It was made in New Zealand in 1994.
About the Work
For Julian Dashper, the drum skin signifies a type of record, the audio recording. Amplifying the idea of the drum as a back-up for musical production, Dashper is giving the artworld some feedback of his own by showing how art processes need props, support and a context to operate properly.
Dashper previously exhibited a series of drum kits with text being a prominent component. Now, without language, the emptied circles of the drum skins on the wall have a proximity to the immediate gallery space, which actually and symbolically collapses the distance between the artwork and its institutional framework.
Taking archetypal geometries of the circle and the grid from High Modernist abstraction, he engages in an assimilation and a critique of its value construction. Dashper plays out their arbitrary character and explicates their points of origin and reception within specific regional and cultural conditions. The net result is similarly to collapse distance, in this case ideological, between the secondhand, delayed relationship of New Zealand to the presumed centrality of the Northern Hemisphere: the near and the far, New Zealand to Europe.
- Sarjeant Bulletin, Julian Dashper/Jan Van Der Ploeg, 23 April - 28 May 1995

Julian Dashper’s ‘Untitled’ installation is comprised of 3 painted drum ‘skins’. These found items become abstracted forms once removed from their original context within a drum kit. The circle shape clearly intrigued Dashper as he regularly played on the formal and conceptual relationships between circles, chains and the letter O in his work. In Robert Leonard’s essay for the exhibition ‘Julian Dashper & Friends’ he states “The circle is a modernist trope, one particularly associated with the constructivist tradition of abstraction.” (‘Julian Dashper & Friends’ 5 Dec 2015 – 15 May 2016, City Gallery Wellington)
- Jennifer Taylor Moore, Curator of Collections, Sarjeant Gallery for the exhibition 'What It Is Not. Abstract art from the Sarjeant collection' 15 June - 25 July 2020
Installed [tbc]
Largest drum is 800mm diameter
enamel paint on drum skin
3 varying sized drum skins installed on the wall. Each cover has a painted circle in the centre: one is yellow, one is black and the other is black with a white and yellow circle in the centre.
Credit Line
Collection of the Sarjeant Gallery, Te Whare o Rehua Whanganui. Purchased, 1995
Collection Type
Permanent collection
Acquisition Date
23 Nov 1995


Accession Number:

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