Contemporary: Alan Preston
Alan Preston gathered these shards of shell, their surfaces worn by sun and sea, from the beach at Muriwai, where he has lived and worked since 1976. He transformed them into brooches simply by adding a silver pin.
Preston originally titled the work Walk along Muriwai beach, a reference to the 1973 painting by Colin McCahon (1919-87). He retitled the work to refer to the debate over the Foreshore and Seabed Act 2004. This act placed ownership of the foreshore and seabed in the hands of the Crown, removing the possibility of Maori claims to their title.
But Preston says his intention was not political: ‘I just put the work out there with the name and let people interpret it as they wish.’