Gavin Hurley (b. 1973) a full-time artist based in Auckland, graduated from Elam School of Fine Arts, University of Auckland, in 1998, with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting. Since then he has exhibited nationally and internationally in private galleries as well as public art institutions. Recent solo exhibitions include: Neatness / Disarray - Melanie Roger Gallery, 2016, & Meet - Melanie Roger Gallery, 2015.
Rather than strict representations, Hurley’s portraits are subtle approximations featuring sitters that seem to spring from outmoded encyclopaedias, old history textbooks, or from obtuse pop-culture origins. Hurley crafts second-hand buccaneers, colonials, cineastes, painters, wenches and year-book darlings into oil paintings and collages. All bear their stylised facial features, whether they are Cupid’s bow lips, eye-colours, chin-clefts, philtra, periwigs or side-burns like characters from the “Guess Who?” board game.
Hurley’s collage-portraits are constructed from carefully layered flat planes of colour that together make up the simplified features of his subjects. Nostalgia for subject matter is extended to material as Hurley utilises textured papers and aged illustrations from old books thrifted from antique and second-hand stores.
Gavin Hurley is courtesy of Melanie Roger Gallery.