Carin Wilson gained an Art and Design qualification from Victoria University of Wellington and Canterbury University. Since then he has exhibited his sculpture extensively throughout New Zealand and also pursued furniture design.
Wilson’s heritage is a strong driving force behind his work. The materials he works with, the titles of his pieces and their construction are all means that he uses to illustrate his political standpoint.
The supplejack used in several of his works symbolises the feeling of entrapment of the Ngati Awa people, but it also pays respect to the skills of Wilson’s forebears to utilise the materials of their environment, which could at times be somewhat unyielding.
Wilson states: ‘The earliest visual images in the culture of New Zealand are the rock drawings of the founding Waitaha tribes of Te Wai Pounamu, the South Island. These archetypal impressions are among the first ever recorded in this land. They are tapu, precious, and of inestimable importance. They are inextricably linked to other elusive notion – of place, identity.
I trust the power art has in shaping our future and approach my work as if it might make a modest contribution. In my understanding as a maker, art is a practical expression of personal philosophy – love and wisdom – in daily practice. Working creatively is a privilege, like being in a constant state of metamorphosis. It has a timeless quality that deepens my appreciation of the gift of life.
From that place I set out to conceive and develop everlasting concepts with simple form and sensitivity to the best materials I can find. When I get it right, the work takes on a life of its own and I slip quietly into the minutiae. There, maybe the dialogue that went on between creator and creation will act as a catalyst for another kind of transformation.’
Carin Wilson has exhibited in Japan as well as nationally on a regular basis, and his works can be found in several private collections throughout New Zealand.