Ainsley O'Connell, Relinquishing Control



Ainsley O’Connell’s works for this exhibition balance chance and design in a process where ‘creating blind’ requires a free and playful relinquishment of control. Two or three colours were chosen for each piece and combined with plaster in a mould. However, what would become the visible front and sides of the artwork were concealed throughout the process. When each work was released from its mould several hours later, the movements of the medium under the maker’s hand were revealed for the first time. The infinite possible outcomes of this process can be imagined but are not foreseeable and are often surprising. While clearly a family of works, the viewer is also invited to find similarities and differences between these objects in the nuanced movements of pigment and plaster.

With a background as an architect, O’Connell has been simultaneously practising as a sculptor and glass artist since 2004. She has been commissioned to make multiple trophies in glass, including the 2009 Louis Vuitton Pacific Series winner’s trophy and was a finalist in the Parkin Drawing Prize in 2018 and the Waiheke Small Sculpture Prize in 2018 and 2019. O’Connell completed a Master of Fine Arts degree at Elam in 2016.