Exploring Modernism in a New Zealand context, Julian Dashper’s work concerns the connections between abstract art and popular culture. Central to his practice is the idea that in New Zealand great Modernist works are known largely through reproduction. Dashper reinterprets and explores artworks regarded by local culture as ‘great’. The Big Bang Theory (1992-93) for instance puts the names of major New Zealand regional artists on drumkits, as though they were rock bands.
Julian Dashper was born in Auckland, New Zealand in 1960. Dashper graduated with a BFA from the University of Auckland in 1982 and has exhibited widely on an international scale. His work has been the subject of a number of major New Zealand retrospectives, including Julian Dashper & Friends, City Gallery Wellington (2015) and Julian Dashper: Professional Practice, Gus Fisher Gallery, Auckland (2010). In 2001 he was awarded a Senior Fullbright Scholarship to visit the University of Nebraska and Chinati Foundation in Marfa as an artist-in-residence. Julian Dashper died in Auckland 30 July 2009.