brett graham: weapons of mass destruction brett graham: weapons of mass destruction
jul 05, 2010

brett graham: weapons of mass destruction

new zealand-based sculptor brett graham, from the ngati koroki sub-tribe of tainui, explores complex historical, political and cultural ideas, transforming them into compelling, often witty and ironic, artistic statements executed as large-scale projects in varied materials.

as part of the 17th biennale of sydney, graham is presenting versions of western ‘weapons of mass destruction’, sculptures which are mainly made from MDF, steel and rubber tires.

‘mihaia’, 2010 MDF, steel, rubber tires image © designboom

‘mihaia’ (2010) is a near full-scale russian BRDM-2 scout car made from MDF, steel and rubber tires. just as western nations often appropriate the names of fourth world peoples for their weapons, indigenous peoples have appropriated the technology of their enemies as ritualistic power symbols. a response to colonization has been the rise of indigenous millenium cults seeking salvation, and identification with both the lost tribes of israel and the later plight of palestinian refugees. the BRDM-2 has been used on both sides of the middle eastern conflict.

back view image © designboom

up close of tires image © designboom

side view image © designboom

front view image © designboom

detail image © designboom

detail image © designboom

te hokioi, 2008 MDF, steel, car lacquer, wheels image © designboom

‘te hokioi’ (2008) is a stealth bomber with its identity reformed by carved maori symbols.

detail image © designboom

side / back view image © designboom

detail of the wing image © designboom

back view image © designboom

back view image © designboom

brett graham was born in auckland, new zealand in 1967 where he currently lives and works. he is represented by two rooms gallery.

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