2011 was a year of immense change in emerging artist Brad Bannan’s life. It started with his studio being reduced to rubble during the Christchurch earthquake. This major upheaval led to his uprooting and migrating to Auckland and a period of personal reflection culminating in his affecting debut solo exhibition ‘A Story Lost’ at nkb Gallery in 2013.
Initially training as an architect and having only started painting in 2001, Bannan has been able to develop both a fresh style and perspective, largely uninfluenced by the mainstream art world and its institutions. A natural gifted and self taught naive painter, whose intention is to produce work that, not only entertains the eye but also challenges the viewer’s perception about the world that surrounds them.
Each work is biographical, born out of a personal interest and association, which is nurtured and moulded into a larger and often ambiguous narrative. Bannan says of his ‘surreal architecture’ series: “The human eye is terribly judgemental, I’ve isolated parts of the building that were interesting enough to warrant a second look – in stripping away the superfluous and periphery details – this forces the viewer to see with fresh eyes something overly familiar”.