Small town artist pursuing her love of art

From Hokitika to Auckland and now to London, Kiwi Holly Schroder is on the road to pursue her love of art.

For as long as she can remember, the 25-year-old artist has had an urge to be creative.

Schroder grew up in the small West Coast town of Hokitika and was surrounded by art.

Her parents had a glass blowing business and family friends ran an art club.

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“I was privileged to have room for creativity in those early years, which nurtured my interest in art,” Schroder said.

Schroder found that growing up in a rural New Zealand town had its pros and cons.

Holly Schroder moved to Auckland at 17 to pursue her passion and is now moving to London.

Delena Nathuran/Delivered

Holly Schroder moved to Auckland at 17 to pursue her passion and is now moving to London.

She enjoyed the quiet and simplicity of Hokitika, but longed for the vibrancy and diversity of a big city. In 2015 she moved to Auckland to pursue her love of creativity and attend art school.

“When I moved to Auckland I saw so many different opportunities that matched my interests. Because of that, I felt really compelled to put everything into my work,” she said.

Schroder has a day job at art auction house Art+Object.

One of Schröder's pieces: Jumpling, acrylic on canvas.

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One of Schröder’s pieces: Jumpling, acrylic on canvas.

“I’ve had the great privilege of being surrounded on a daily basis by artworks from the greatest New Zealand artists,” she said.

In 2020 Schroder founded the London Street Art Club where they host weekly art workshops at the Textile Lofts collaborative workspace in Auckland.

Workshops range from life drawing and drawing practice to exploring different painting mediums while participants sip a glass of wine or gin.

Schroder's Emerging Fabrications project was a large scale moving image projection onto multiple panels of fabric.

Jeremy Ho/delivered

Schroder’s Emerging Fabrications project was a large scale moving image projection onto multiple panels of fabric.

One of her favorite projects, and a real “pinch me” moment for Schroder, was exhibiting her light installation work Emerging Fabrications at Art Week Auckland in 2019.

“I had the privilege of working with one of the country’s top light artists, Angus Muir, who helped bring the idea to life. The scale of the work and the combination of movement, light and sound created a fully immersive experience,” she said.

This is what Schroder has always wanted to achieve with her artwork – to create an experience for people.

Schroder's Merging Faces Exhibition, Allpress Studio 2019.

Maegan Mcdowell/Delivered

Schroder’s Merging Faces Exhibition, Allpress Studio 2019.

“When people are totally immersed in the experience, they become present in the moment, which is a beautiful feeling,” she said.

Schroder’s artworks are created through a layering process – the mixing and fusing of motifs.

“I’m interested in sensations and experiences and how the mind responds to different stimuli or tries to make sense of things. I want to pull the viewer in at certain points, distorting perspective, manipulating subjects, and creating a push-and-pull in the work,” she said.

Works from her home studio in Auckland.

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Works from her home studio in Auckland.

Schroder is flying to London next month where she is looking forward to learning about a new culture, meeting people and seeing and making art.

“I look forward to living in a big city with a rich culture of art and history. Auckland is like Hokitika compared to London, so it’s going to be another big leap for me,” she said.

She has an upcoming exhibition in Auckland called ‘Continuity’, which she says is defined by ‘the uninterrupted and consistent existence or operation of something over time’.

After opening on the evening of July 21st, Continuity will be open daily from 10am to 4pm until July 26th at 1 Bowen Ave, Auckland.

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