Research into site-based art projects has seen an AUT senior lecturer be the worthy recipient of a 2012 Fulbright New Zealand Senior Scholar Award.
Senior lecturer in Visual Arts, Paul Cullen, has received one of only six Fulbright awards, which gives him the opportunity to research collaborative and non-gallery public art practices while based at Auburn University in Auburn, Alabama in the USA.
He will be researching the development of a sculpture and design intervention with Dr Rod Barnett from Auburn’s School of Architecture for the ArtWeb Alabama project.
Cullen was invited by Dr Barnett to participate in the project, which aims to revitalise rural and small town living conditions.
Their collaborative project will see the development of a landscape-based art and design intervention that aims to engage local communities and encourage visitors.
The collaboration will result in a sculptural installation and public exhibition in Alabama in late 2013.
He will be heading to Alabama in March 2012 to work with Barnett after discussing the possibility for some time.
“My interests in site-based projects goes right back to my art school days, parallel with a long standing interest in the designed landscape. Artists in the late 60s and early 70s starting exploring ways of working which took them outside the gallery context and this is a mode that has developed and evolved since then,” he says.
Being a scholar
There are a small number of senior scholar awards granted each year for New Zealand scholars to lecture and/or conduct research at an American institution for three to five months.
Cullen says he is keen to use the project and associated research to build reciprocal art and design research possibilities with the USA for AUT researchers.
“The project has a strong conceptual basis, is achievable, has good participants and will build links between practitioners in NZ and the USA. I have been doing a lot of background research and reading around NZ and the USA relations, the history of the Alabama area and particularly related developments in art and design practices.”
Alongside this he will research contemporary experimental site-based projects around the US - especially in Los Angeles, New York and Marfa Texas.