Matthew Cowan: Flowerbeard

09 November 2013 - 09 February 2014

Artist Matthew Cowan exhibits the latest works in his ongoing global series of performative Flowerbeard self-portraits on the Te Tuhi Billboards. Throughout his practice Cowan has explored rituals of folk celebration and their uneasy relationship with contemporary life. In the Flowerbeard series, Cowan evokes the Wildman character of Medieval European origin by creating elaborate beard disguises using vegetation and flowers from the location in which he stands. According to folklore, the Wildman inhabits a mythical space between the natural and the civilised world. Cowan illustrates and complicates this mythology by finding contemporary thresholds between natural and manmade environments around the world in which to perform.

Bruce E. Phillips