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July Feature – Evan Woodruffe

Sunday, July 1, 2012

A painter, collector, navigator and technician and man about town, Evan Woodruffe is as active in Auckland’s art community as it is possible to be.

Raised in an art-oriented family, the art world has been Evan’s community all of his life. His family established and ran Studio Art Supplies – purveyors of materials to artists all around the region – and he now manages the shop on behalf of Gordon Harris.

He is an authority on the technical aspects of art materials, and generous with advice and assistance to artists in the shop as well as providing practical workshops for tertiary art schools, community art centres, and private groups.

When he isn’t selling materials, he is busy using them himself in the Eden Terrace studio he shares with 13 other artists. He’s mounted six solo exhibitions, participated in numerous group shows and he won the Molly Morpeth Cannady Award for painting in 2011.

Evan’s work is narrative, figurative and, unsurprisingly, very painterly. “I like the ambiguity of paint and it’s ability to hover between representation and illusion,” he says. “Good painting activates your mind – it stimulates you – whereas a 50 inch plasma TV just encourages passivity.”

Whether it’s showing support to fellow artists at their openings or writing an ’Agony Aunt’ column for painters in the Artist Alliance newsletter, Evan is an active participant in the art community and in 2011 he joined the board of the Uptown Arts Trust, a charitable organisation which promotes the arts in the K’Road, Ponsonby area.

Sharing what he knows seems second nature to him and the Art Fair takes full advantage of this, employing him as a Navigator at the fair to provide visitors with insights in to some of the works, and making him an annual panelist in Art Week speed dating.

“I believe art is a positive action that improves our society. The actual making of art is essentially and necessarily a solitary undertaking, but the social aspect is critical too, either at an opening, an art hub, or discussing the world with another artist at the pub!”

You can view Evan’s latest work here: www.orexart.co.nz

Or find about more about painting workshops here: www.studioart.co.nz

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