Isolation Hotel

This exhibition is no longer on display at the Museum.

Isolation Hotel will be unavailable for photography on Wednesday 16 and Thursday 17 March, but visitors will be able to watch artist Heather Straka create new work in the space. The exhibition will be closed from 4.00 pm both days.

Isolation Hotel will also be unavailable for photography from 10.00 am on Friday 18 March. We apologise for any inconvenience.

Boy in trouble 2021

Boy in trouble, 2021. Courtesy of Heather Straka, All Rights Reserved

Create a fantasy and tell your story on the cinematic stage of Heather Straka’s immersive new exhibition.

A cocktail of drama, art history and cinematic vision, Isolation Hotel is multidisciplinary work combining photography, performance, installation and set design. Heather Straka, an Auckland-based artist, has recreated the look and feel of a 1930s German hotel foyer, once opulent and now run-down, on an elaborate stage set inside the museum.

This set forms the backdrop for a series of Straka’s photographs, which feature a diverse cast of mysterious characters seeking sanctuary in the hotel. Everyone can find a character to identify with and make up their own stories. Straka’s images recall the epic, heroic history and mythology paintings of Caravaggio, Rubens and Rembrandt, hinting at soap opera-esque backstories, secrets and dates with destiny.

The set also provides a backdrop for visitors to take their own photos and tell their own stories. Straka invites them to project their own dreams, desires, and anxieties onto her set.

Entertainment, activities and events organised by guest curator Audrey Baldwin will see the set brought to life in a variety of ways throughout the exhibition. Click here to see what's on.

Isolation Hotel hints at present-day social issues; Covid lockdowns and managed isolation, #metoo, LGBTQIA+ aesthetics and liberation, the housing shortage and contested monuments to a colonial past.

The work is a unique and enigmatic art experience that aims to give the viewer a voice and allow them to use their own subjectivity.

Produced in collaboration with SCAPE Public Art.

This exhibition is no longer on display at the Museum.
27 November 2021 – 20 March 2022
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