TO THE HEART OF THE MATTER
Making the ordinary "extraordinary" has for more than twenty years underlined the motivation and passion in Chris Charteris' work. "To the Heart of the Matter", showcases the depth and intensity behind Chris Charteris' sculpting career.
The Heart symbol is a new motif for Charteris, seen in this exhibition for the first time. It explores the essence of the heart as a deeply felt metaphor. As a symbol it has become overloaded with meaning and significance to the point where it would seem empty and cliche; "and this was a challenge to work with" says Charteris. He comments:
"The hardest part is the space before an idea"
"I wanted to revert our attention back to the original connotations of the heart symbol."
"My symbols and motifs are often rooted in Pacific heritage - they relate to cultural forms and designs. They also relate to my family and a sense of belonging and spirituality."
"Despite all efforts it is hard to transcend your own culture but there are many concepts and symbols that have universal meaning. My work relates back to the Oceanic by finding forms that are universal; I bridge all the cultures together. "
Charteris' cultural background and personal philosophy are apparent in his work. Referencing the maori notion of taonga, he believes that everything is a living thing, that even inanimate objects possess a life essence;
"Rocks are not dead - their spirituality and energy are eternal."
The life of an object is continuous; it is impacted and influenced by the way in which it interacts with people.
"To the heart of the Matter" consists of a variety of sculptural objects including contemporary light boxes, large-scale adornments and traditional carving.
Chris Charteris' work is sought by collectors all over the world and his "Navigator Necklace" has recently been acquired by the British museum and is currently on show in London.
His works are in tune with nature; melting into the environment whilst dwelling upon some of the most beautiful and intimate details that we may often overlook.
Featured in the Herald Review, by T J Macnamara