For background on the artist and works, see below.
About the Artist
Dick Frizzell, born 1943 in Auckland, educated at Ilam (the University of Canterbury School of Fine Art) tends to defy curatorial definition, and has developed a presence as something of an icon in New Zealand’s visual culture. Hugely talented in many media, he resists being categorised in any one art style or genre. Before moving into visual arts Frizzell worked as an animator, commercial artist and illustrator and has no qualms about blurring the categories between his commercial work and art.
His work has always been characterised by a highly skilled handling of paint and an endlessly inventive range of subject matter and styles: faux-naive New Zealand landscapes, figurative still-life, comic book characters and witty parodies of modernist abstraction. Frizzell often makes a deliberate effort to mix up the categories of high and low art – poking fun at the intellectualisation of ‘high art’.
The tiki motif has appeared often in his work, best known now in his Mickey to Tiki series morphing an image of Mickey Mouse into the Maori hei-tiki icon, as well as his ongoing pop art series around the ubiquitous grocer’s face on signage of Four Square supermarkets throughout small-town New Zealand, although he has explored it in a more expressive fashion.
Dick Frizzell was the first of several prominent NZ artists who agreed to donate their talent to create a series of limited edition prints to help raise funds for the National Whale Centre to be built in Picton, Marlborough.
One for the Whales continues Frizzell’s artistic collaboration with legendary NZ poet Sam Hunt, this time based on Hunt’s poem about the days of whalers in Picton, comparing this with the North American whaling town of Nantucket. A number of these screenprints will be held back for a portfolio to be released with one of each of the participating artists’ works. However collectors have the opportunity to acquire each work individually at a special price on first release.
All proceeds of these artworks go to the National Whale Centre project, details of which can be viewed on www.aworldwithwhales.com. See also details of Graham Bennett’s wall sculptures.