Steve Carr

Steve Carr

IMA at Ksubi

13 September–11 October 201213 Sep–11 Oct 2012

A recent quitter, Auckland artist Steve Carr presents three videos about cigarettes, childhood, and dubious parenting techniques. In Smoke Train, a young mother entertains her daughter by modifying a cigarette pack so it can be used to puff out smoke. We are drawn to this nostalgic, loving scene. (Carr’s mother showed him the trick when he was a child.) However, there is something disturbing about the way the mother inducts her little one into the filthy habit. In Cigarette Tree, the plastic wrapping from a cigarette pack is drawn above the box and lined with paper-ends. When the ends are lit, the smoke magically curls inwards, ensconcing the wrapping in a wreath of mephitis. Finally, the wrapping collapses. The scene suggests a magic trick, a scientific demonstration, and a gravesite. In Annabel, one of Carr’s students attempts (unsuccessfully) to smoke a whole pack of cigarettes in one sitting, like a naughty child caught smoking who has been forced to smoke the rest of the packet as punishment.

The Institute of Modern Art acknowledges the traditional custodians of the land upon which the IMA now stands, the Jagera, Yuggera, Yugarapul, and Turrbal people. We offer our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as the first artists of this country. In the spirit of allyship, the IMA will continue to work with First Nations people to celebrate, support, and present their immense past, present, and future contribution to artistic practice and cultural expression.