From Omega to Alpha: an exhibition of the work of James Ormsby


Artist James Ormsby’s exhibition at the Tauranga Art Gallery visually explores his own whakapapa. The adventures trace origins to the Tainui waka and a later match with Scottish /Irish personalities. His art reflects tipuna, land and sea, river and mountains.

Ormsby said there are four aspects of art: ‘1. Intention, 2, Research, 3. Composition and 4. Out of the work comes the work.’ Art is a mutable experience that may change from conception to completion. It transcends the parts, becoming a new entity. During the exhibition a scriptorium is erected. Scriptoria provide a space for scribes, illuminators who transform well accepted documents into art with the written word. As a section is completed, the scroll-like works slide over the top of the scriptorium, winding down the outside of the structure. There are two variables in the process.

James Ormsby, the first variable, chose to write Revelations; not from beginning to end, but just the reverse: from end to the beginning.


The second variable: local artists take turns in creating their personal art and at the same time writing a section of a Tauranga City Council bylaw.

                                                                        James Ormsby

                                                                            Matawai. 2013, 2018.

James Ormsby is giving a presentation on Wednesday 5 September at 3:45pm in the Tauranga Art Gallery. First few minutes is a short AGM for Friends of the Tauranga Art Gallery followed by the artist talk.

This is a free event open to all. It is not necessary to be a member. Previous offerings by Ormsby have been informative, insightful and humorous.

Text and Images by Lee Switzer .  Slider Image of the work of James Ormsby  “Aroha 2002” [Detail]

LEE SWITZER:  Lee is a longstanding and regular contributor to a variety of categories within ARTbop,  His photographic work can also be seen supporting interviews and activities of other contributors and events, exhibitions and performances around the wider Bay of Plenty.  You can find a wide range of his contributed content in the ARTbop archives and also in the Tauranga City Library administered archives

Lee Switzer, archival photographer and ARTbop contributor finds himself an interview subject

ARTbop promotes

                     (or we think you should check this out!)

          ARTbop is promoting poetry in the Western Bay of Plenty

Established spoken word, slam poet and performance poet Dhaivat Mehta and author, reviewer and poet Marcus Hobson are at the heart of a poetry initiative to give Whakamarama District locals the opportunity to meet and share their spoken words with others.  Meeting on the second Thursday of every month at the Black Sheep Whakamarama and providing an evening of entertaining words and thought from 6.00pm to 8.30pm.




Join us every second Thursday of the month,

6.00pm to 8.30pm

Read your own poems or poems by your favourite poet.   Enjoy the power of the spoken word!

Phone:   07 571 8722   021 145 5810

ARTbop Editor, book reviewer, author and persistent reader of poetry, Marcus Hobson at alchemy at the Black Sheep in April 2018

The cover is as amazing as the words: ARTbop Editor, Book Reviewer and alchemy participant Marcus Hobson

You’ll also want to check out Dhaivat’s newest spoken word and music project created in conjunction with local rocker Kingsley Smith – TRYPTOFUNK on YouTube

Tauranga slam poet and alternative spoken word poet Dhaivat Mehta




 The Fairs are held within the Black Sheep Cafe & Restaurant complex on the last Sunday of every month (on the 16th in December 2018)  11am to 3pm.  There is heaps of parking, clean toilets and wonderful food and coffee.  There’s live music. There’s an event prize you can win.   If you would like to join us as an exhibitor/retailer of your original creativity or artisan products you can contact us at

We are sign posted along SH2 with signage to the turnoff of SH2 and Plummer’s Point Road.  You won’t be able to miss us!   And check out Birgitt Shannon’s videos of the Fair.  Each month Birgitt, a talented Kati Kati artist interviews two or three of the Fair’s participants and exhibitors.  Here’s  just a taste of Birgitt’s talent as a Video Arts Journalist in her recent conversation with Paeroa based artist and gallery owner Wendy Mikkelsen.

The AAAFair exhibitors have donated some of their creativity to support fundraising for medical treatment purposes for a Black Sheep staffer.   The Black Sheep has also started a Give a Little page.   The raffle for the wonderful local and original creativity is just inside the cafe door (opposite the cafe food cabinet) – we’ll draw it on Sunday 26th so make sure you call in and get some tickets.   This is the second raffle the AAAFair have provided to support Rachel.

Art by Birgitt Shannon and an heirloom teddy bear with some fabulous original earrings and….




Award-winning entertainer stars in Songs for Nobodies at Baycourt this September
A spellbinding tribute to legendary performers Judy Garland, Patsy Cline, Edith Piaf, Billie Holiday and Maria Callas will “reach out and grab your heart” when it hits the stage at Baycourt Community and Arts Centre next month.
Baycourt Presents is proudly bringing highly acclaimed production Songs for Nobodies starring award-winning New Zealand actress and singer Ali Harper to the Baycourt Addison Theatre on Sunday 9 September, 7:30pm.
Written by Melbourne playwright Joanna Murray-Smith and originally produced for Christchurch’s Court Theatre, Songs for Nobodies features five life-changing encounters between Garland, Cline, Piaf, Holiday and Callas and the everyday women whose lives these the five legendary performers touched through their music.
“In my 25-year career, there have been a handful of scripts that have come my way and have felt like a gift. Songs for Nobodies is one of those gifts,” said the shows stars Ali Harper.
“I love the way the show poignantly explores the uncanny influence that chance encounters, both directly and indirectly, play in our lives.”
Songs for Nobodies is interspersed with the music that made Garland, Cline, Piaf, Holliday and Callas true icons of their age.
The show includes songs such as Cline’s Crazy, Garland’s Come Rain or Come Shine and Piaf’s Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien, all well-loved pieces of music. There are also well-known songs from Holiday and Callas which are structured into the play delivering an incredible emotional pay-off. Director Ross Gumbley said audiences won’t believe that one actress can play all these different women and that in itself is spellbinding.
“I have been so excited to be on this journey with Ali. Seeing the reaction that this exceptional play, performed by a truly gifted performer, draws from an audience is fantastic.”
Harper is currently touring Songs for Nobodies around New Zealand and said she is looking forward to bringing this wonderful show and inspiring female characters to Baycourt on September 9.
“Songs for Nobodies boasts a stunning script which perfectly marries the incredible power of music. It will reach out and grab your heart. It will hit you on a comedic level, an intellectual level and on a spiritual level,” said Harper.
“Profound, ironical, funny, moving and ultimately astonishing, Songs for Nobodies is outstanding entertainment.” – Manawatu Standard
“…in this production we are transfixed by a performer at her peak. In fact she is so good at times, I hardly recognise her – she has become the alter egos she represents.” – Theatreview NZ.
Baycourt Presents Songs or Nobodies starring award winning actress and singer Ali Harper in the Baycourt Addison Theatre on Sunday 9 September, 7:30pm.
Tickets cost Adult $39.90, Child (14 & Under) $20.00, Concession (Seniors & Unwaged) $35.00, Groups 8+ $30.00, and Friends of Baycourt (Baycourt Box Office) $32.00 and are available from the Baycourt Box Office, online via the Ticketek website at, or by calling 0800 TICKETEK.


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