untitled (bedroom) from Jerusalem series

Paul Johns, Artist

This is one of the photographs in our collection. It was made in Whanganui Region, New Zealand in 2005.
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Object Detail

About the Work
“This photograph is very nostalgic for me, when I was little I was sent to stay with the nuns at this convent in Hiruharama for holidays to give Mum a break. I remember feeling lonely and a bit scared and homesick when I stayed there but now when I visit it feels like home. The nuns used to take us possum shooting at night. I remember them wearing their full nun habits with shotguns slung over their shoulders. It was my job to shine the torch on the possum while they did the shooting.”
Tia Ranginui, Gallery Assistant at the Sarjeant Gallery, for the January 2020 instalment of the My Choice exhibition series.
Frame 598 x 598mm
colour photograph
The artist spent time in Jerusalem and part of his time during his Tylee cottage residency June to October, 2005. His artist statement reflects the works made while visiting Jerusalem:

"The road to Hiruharama (Jerusalem) is a journey of stories, images and mystery, the spiritual and material aspects of which are interwoven and dependent upon each other to give us a unified whole.

Ideas derived from this journey make a reference to a great source of artifice and history to present a contemporary, selective, humorous and highly stylized interpretation of isolated information to create a depiction of an idea set within the confines of the images presented.

Living in a tin shed room adjoining the washhouse, I anticipated breakfast each morning and dinner at six in the Convent of St Joseph’s; amidst the laughter of early-morning conversation and the generous dinner cooked by the resident restorative painter, I was enlightened with knowledge in the way that everyone is a story teller and teacher.

Mythological symbolism is the raison d’etre for the figures featured. I depict a simplified view of current ideas and incident using a contemporary style and a personal philosophy.

The Rabbit Royale sits crownless; the Figure ½ G stands generous, and the River flows in the only way it can . . . to the sea."
Credit Line
Collection of the Sarjeant Gallery Te Whare o Rehua Whanganui. Tylee Residency exchange, 2005.
Collection Type
Permanent collection
Acquisition Date



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