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Kirstie REA

Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia born 1955

Balancing the blades 2004 Place made: Pialligo, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Materials & Technique: glass, glass: kilnformed, wheelcut, fire-polished Support: steel wall brackets

Dimensions: installed 110.0 h x 105.0 w x 37.0 d cm each panel 112.0 h x 21.0 w x 9.0 d cm
Acknowledgement: Purchased 2003
Accession No: NGA 2004.422.A-C

Through her cast-glass work, Kirstie Rea investigates the idea of the gradient as a form of addition or reduction to material and structure. She has returned again and again to the archetypal form of the fork and blade, each of them essential implements in the shaping and manipulation of built and natural landscapes. By referencing such tool shapes in glass, Rea sets up a paradox of use and function, drawing attention to the gradient and direction of transmitted light as it interacts with these attenuated forms. The blade-like forms of Balancing the blades curve away from the wall in order to cast shafts of coloured light, completing a visual composition. Rea’s work is strongly located within the cultural and physical framework of her home city of Canberra, making reference to its planned imposition on the natural landscape with the geometry of the precision tool, and the measurement and manipulation of light.

Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra