Having just returned to New Zealand after a year in the United States undertaking two international art residencies, Sara Hughes returns to Gow Langsford Gallery to exhibit new paintings in Scales of Economy.
The works in this exhibition explore the artist’s interest in patterns of behaviour and configurations of consumerism. While in the US, Hughes became fascinated by the current political climate and the issues surrounding the hotly contested Democratic Primary Elections and their associated costs alongside the pending economic crisis. This compelled her to analyse how colour is used for both economic and political means, from supermarkets to CNN. Hughes’ paintings reference issues and concepts that are also connected to a wider global phenomenon. Using text, digits, colour and guilloché patterns the artist interrogates everyday messages and actions. The works allude to aspects of wealth distribution, hegemonic structures and currency value and reflect a variety of economic transactions from the stock exchange to the garage sale.