• Rebecca Hazard

View the 3D Online Exhibition Tour HERE

Learn more about what inspired this work, in this enlightening essay by Dina Jezdic:

Cathedral of Flesh

Rebecca Hazard's paintings are making their mark at a time of ecological, social and technological transition. Deliberately attempting to reorient us towards a more connected human dimension, the work zeroes in on our relationship to capitalism, extractivism, consumerism - our relationship with the 'other' and our often-uneasy relationship with the natural world. With our conscious and unconscious attentions trapped on many social media platforms and with crypto resources on the rise, 'Honey, you're caving in' is appealing to our humanity, and the universal human unease with death and dying.

Action packed with visceral immediacy; Hazard's works appear like large slabs of flesh taking up space. Raw and dense with vibrant colour, the subject matter makes us feel like we might be swallowed or perhaps cocooned inside a large leviathan creature. A closer look suggests a series of abstract spaces sharpening our perspective. They take forms of valleys, crevices, curves that resemble breasts and even nipples dripping with milk. Fluid and artfully layered, these textures guide our eyes to wander across the painted terrain, towards the infinite, while brimming with the force and the scale before us. The canvases are unstretched and the treatment of paint is blurring rather than precise. There is movement that emerges out of these incomplete body parts, scars and marbling, watering ducts that ooze toward us implying the complexity of the frame and its adorning flesh. The work is searching for an entry point, to engage us with the significance of meat, by stepping into it, in an attempt to revise our contemporary associations. Perhaps it is trying to offer the moment of saturation by serving us a platter of the hyperreal and occasionally bizarre. There is something tender but claustrophobic to these works that amplifies the gloriously messy and complex nature of our human need to dominate. It is exposing of the truth that we often want buried instead of vulnerably suspended in space for all to see. It is about revealing the layers of self-imposed privileges linked to human exploitation of natural resources interlocked with our search for existential meaning through aesthetic experience.

Rebecca Hazard has created a special immersive environment where the viewer and their gaze is implicated as both spectator and subject. In the world where we are all examining the new terrain of the Anthropocene, 'Honey,

you're caving in' is attempting to draw us into the intimacy of the subject by creating space to make new and emerging connections to our own flesh, ideas and practices towards the body as the central substance. Instead of focussing on the increasingly urgent matters concerning the climate change, the paintings are a tool to a transformation or a challenge of self and our desperate need to slow down. It is an anxious acknowledgement that we need to be in constant reconning with this dilemma and all the intertwined value systems within it.

To encounter these enlarged images is equally overwhelming as it is beautiful. The work is inserting itself into the rhythms of our own pulse, channelling an attitude of hope and being awake in the world. The artist is examining the roles of meat in our sustenance, consumption, the relationships with animals that humans eat, while considering them as a witness to our humanity. Can we become transfixed by the experience when confronted with intimacy within the lipid and muscular flesh, the blood vessels and glowing colour that allows us to imagine what it's like to be 'outside one's skin' - to be free of it - to be augmented - to imagine ourselves in our virtual avatar form - to unsettle us.

Hazard has created a soft landing for the body to become the safe object of a voyeuristic gaze for all. No more is the flesh safely removed from sight and we can finally get ready to face instead of fetishize the current schism between the self and the environment. The work is an invitation to a familiar context which enlarges our perspective towards a differentiated practice of care and repair. More importantly, the artist has all of us confront our position as the apex predator in hope of guiding us towards flexing our vulnerability muscle instead.

The work exposes our ambiguous relationship with animals by acknowledging the void between the human and nonhuman worlds, and the possibility of overcoming it. Looking at the paintings allows us to acknowledge the objectification of the body through art and science while the scale fulfills the growing need to accommodate the human gaze. It is an invitation to leave our comfort zones by embracing the fear within by allowing ourselves to be exposed through typically concealed insides. To do so, is a promise to alignment.

There are no centrepieces in the show and Hazzard is more interested in creating a portal that allows us to be moved while encouraging and enticing our desires to sensually project onto the flesh before us. It is a point of creatinga conversation of care, allowing ourselves to be seduced by large bitesize pieces that mesmerise us. We want to see ourselves in them, enveloped by them, communing with nature in a cathedral of flesh. This intense sensory overload has rarely been expressed with such openness and violence that is startingly unhinged. It is teeming with meaning by awakening our sensory consciousness while connecting to the experience of bodily sacrifice.

We often talk about food as good enough to die for. It is a great and familiar line that describes a build-up of taste so immense that we might just expire while we peak with delight. Having felt the need to feed such a desire and simultaneously be hyperaware of its consequences I wonder if we are capable of retrieving the ability to identify and be empowered with the 'other'?

Honey, we are all caving in.

Opening Hours

  • Wednesday - Sunday, 11am - 5pm
  • or by appointment


  • Shed 10
  • 13 Coles Avenue
  • Mt Eden, Auckland