Cammaeus - print maker extraordinaire, Prue MacDougall

Posted by Fiona Cable on


For this second solo exhibition in Spain, Prue has created a series of new works that explore the European heritage of most New Zealand genealogy lines. Using her recently uncovered maternal family tree, Prue’s works continue themes of identity, presented as nostalgic cameos where the present connects with the past. In this way Prue has been able to put herself and her experiences at the center of her work. Cultural identity helps us negotiate who we are as individuals and shapes our understanding of the world. Myth and reality are often blurred and narratives of many strange events become embedded as family folklore narratives.

                            Miss New Zealand

Prue has long been fascinated with ephemera and antique curiosities that reference earlier times. Like a magpie, she browses junk shops and bottom draws for bizarre bits of bling and trolls through natural history museums of the world. Using these as her starting point, Prue creates complex collages which highlight the layering of memory and time. At times playful and whimsical, at other times serious and introspective, the work embodies the dynamic relationships found in families and institutions. The touch of Victorian illustrations evident in some of the images, gives them a quaintly archaic feel.

Prue is aware that printmakers are both artists in their own right and graphic historians who keep alive the inventions of major artists of earlier periods. Her compositions echo the imagery of Goya an Rego and to a lesser extent Piranesi, but Prue acknowledges it is their application of chiaroscuro and theoretical drama as a means to evoke emotional response, that primarily interests her.

To browse this new work click here.


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