Phil Dadson

E-Motion 3 and E-Motion 4
1800 x 1250 mm
ink on paper, two sides, frame
signed in ink lower right
Courtesy of the artist and Trish Clark Gallery,
Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland

Estimate: NZD 7,000 — 10,000

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Phil Dadson’s E-Motion works capture kinetic energy. Like Dadson’s Headstamps and Rock Records series, they function as a register of being human, and in the moment. Dadson describes the swelling forms of E-Motion 3 and E-Motion 4 as electrical fields that trace motion and duration through an accumulation of gestural mark making. Suspended in the gallery, these artefacts of concentrated rhythm and motion are both meditative and ecstatic.

Dadson’s highly inventive trans-disciplinary approach encompasses video/sound installation, building and performing with invented instruments, sonic objects and sound sculptures, music composition, visual music drawings and graphics, which have often found a home at Artspace Aotearoa. Since 1987, when Dadson exhibited Groundplans / Soundtracks - the first exhibition staged at Artspace’s original Federal Street location - Dadson has participated in numerous programmes at each site the organisation has occupied.

Artist Biography & History
with Artspace Aotearoa:


961 Album Release (group performance) with Paul Winstanley and Tom Nunn, 11 December 2019

Conundrum Quartet: SoundCulture’99 (solo), March 1999

Action Replay: Post Object Art (group), 7 October – 28 November 1998, a joint project with Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, Ngāmotu New Plymouth, with the support of Auckland Art Gallery

The Fourth Window : An Archeology of Stones (solo), 1995

Songs for Unsung Heroes (group performance) as part of Sound/ Watch, June 25 – July 28 1989

Groundplans / Soundtracks (solo), 1987


Artspace supported the production of Dadson’s An Archaeology of Stones, an audio CD and interactive CD-ROM produced in 1999 as part of The Fourth Window.

Phil Dadson


Philip Dadson (Born 1946 in Ahuriri Napier, New Zealand) ONZM is a New Zealand musician and artist, who was a member of the foundation group for Scratch Orchestra (UK) and later, founder of Scratch Orchestra (NZ) and From Scratch (1974). His highly inventive trans-disciplinary approach encompasses experimental musical instruments and sonic objects, video/sound installation, music composition, graphic scores, drawing & graphics, sound sculptures and improv with invented instruments. Dadson has received many major awards and commissions including a Fulbright travel award to the USA, residencies in Antarctica, Delhi, Venice, San Francisco, and numerous International research, exhibition and performance grants. In 2001 he received a New Zealand Arts Foundation Laureate award and in 2003 an Antarctic Artist Fellowship. Dadson was appointed an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit (ONZM) in 2005.