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Post-object art

Experience as art

Post-object art emerged in New Zealand during the 1960s and 70s. This new practice, generally known as conceptual art outside New Zealand, focused on art as a process or concept rather than an object. Post-object artists, such as Jim Allen, often created situations and experiences as works of art in themselves, using materials and objects in non-traditional ways.

Post-object artworks are often site-specific - some incorporate elements of performance, while others are temporary installations. Consequently, many works are ephemeral - and no longer exist. Some artworks have been documented through photographs, notes, and sketches, and some can be faithfully refabricated according to the artist’s instructions.

Te Papa collects post-object art to document this important period in New Zealand's art history, and to demonstrate its legacy in contemporary New Zealand art.

This text was prepared for the Collecting Contemporary exhibition February 2012.

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