Matilda Fraser, Poet No. 2, 2019. Technical direction: Sam Lummis. Photography by Sam Hartnett.

Matilda Fraser, Poet No. 2

28 September – 14 December 2019 | Temporary exhibition, The Booth

 

Who needs poets? Everything we need has already been written – it’s a question of rearrangement.

Poet No. 2 is a Brutalist-style vending machine that explores the circulation of money and text. By inserting a NZ$1 coin into the machine, a unique 14 line sonnet on thermal receipt paper will be produced for the user to take away. Each sonnet printed is unique, formed of random lines of text from an archive of poetry from the last 60 years from published journals such as Landfall, Sport, Takehe, Turbine, and others.

Poet No. 2 addresses current modes of reading and text production such as the internet, which favours new connections, swift exchanges of information and collective authorship. For Fraser, Poet No. 2 considers the idea of a “national voice” as an alternate, and potentially dystopic, future of the creation of cultural capital.

Matilda Fraser is the third artist to exhibit in The Booth this year. The Booth is an open-call opportunity for artists to respond to the site that once housed the building’s original telephone booth in the days of Radio 1YA.