Hero photograph
 ‘Wild Dunedin Committee Meeting’ depicts Kakapo mansplaining to Tui, while Hoiho listens in. It was made to acknowledge all the work Wild Dunedinites do to create the fabulous Wild Dunedin Festival every year.
Photo by Kerry Mackay

Op-Shops and Animals

Wild Dunedin —

Dunedin artist Kerry Mackay spends time with both op-shops and animals as they inspire her art. Kerry often works with found materials, the old and discarded treasures that end up in a second hand shop - waiting. Humour is important to her, and she hopes these "improbable little stitched scenarios" make the viewer smile too.

"I like working with old fabrics, their colours have faded, there is evidence of wear, of another life lived before I found them. There is no brashness of the new.
I find old machine made tapestries then stitch over the image to make them of this place and the here and now. I call these stitchy pics’ and consider it drawing, using thread instead of pencil. I love the luminosity of thread as I build it, layer upon layer to create an image."     Kerry Mackay

Kerry often uses pets as subjects, because they are close by and easy to observeShe has also used native birds as a subject, especially the special ones like Hoiho, the Yellow-eyed Penguin.

‘Poetry Slam Cats’ features my cats  Murray and Russell, who often star in my art, and acknowledges Dunedin as a UNESCO City of Literature.  — Image by: Kerry Mackay
‘Who Invited the Dog’ features Murray the cat, JoJo the lamb and Leonard the dog, all at a Christmas party.  — Image by: Kerry Mackay
‘Hoiho sings and Little Blue Hums’ features those birds in Victorian garb at a New Years Party. — Image by: Kerry Mackay

Sometimes, if the tapestry suggests it, I mix up native and exotic creatures. Kerry Mackay
‘Camel, Hōiho and Hoiho Party On’ — Image by: Kerry Mackay

‘Crocodile and Gecko Go Op-Shopping’ — Image by: Kerry Mackay

These circle artworks were created for Gallery de Novo. Every Christmas season they invite their artists to create a small circular artwork for their ‘Around Christmas’exhibition.

In this time of lockdown it's an opportunity for many artists to focus on creating new work and Gallery de Novo has encouraged artists to send in selfies of working at home that they will put up on their Instagram page. Check them out to see other local artists.  

This is Kerry's selfie and in the background are her collection of skulls that will be future artworks. — Image by: Kerry Mackay

Kerry and Pamela Brown are theartdept and each year they give their time to create a children's art workshop for Wild Dunedin. Their Wild Thing Stick workshop will be happening now in April 2021.

But they have created a series of things to do at home called Iso ARt Ideas - check these out here: