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Stephen McCurdy was born in Roxburgh, Central Otago, in 1949.


In the late sixties he studied music and cello at Canterbury University. He wrote a thesis on atonal motivic analysis of Schoenberg's Op 16 Pieces for Orchestra which he didn't submit, though he did encounter the works of German painters of the Weimar period like Dix, Beckmann, Grosz, which were influential later.


He subsequently worked for thirty years as a composer, music producer and director, production photographer and occasional songwriter for NZ theatre, television and film.


He began painting seriously in 1996, and has infrequently exhibited.


'There seem to be two broad strands in my painting. One is figurative, human, and often theatrical. The other is more abstract, though never entirely so. I am interested in myth and belief, less so in art theory. Painting, like music and drama, is an old art. 

Time in a painting works differently from the directional flow of time in drama and music. It is clearly not linear, without beginnings or ends. I do not fully understand it.


Exhibition is an inadequate, even misleading term. So is show, though it does imply something is happening that looks for a fertile suspension of disbelief. Maybe better to say 'this is a fragment of a world to wander about in, to inhabit for a time, for those who are willing. Not so much to look at, but to look into. Perhaps even to stand inside for a moment, and look out'

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