Natalie Guy

Natalie Guy, The Genius Loci of the Chapel, #2, #3, #5, 2020

Fibreglass over polystyrene. H3000-3200 x W500-910 x D590-620mm.

Natalie Guy’s art practice engages mid-century Modernism from a contemporary perspective, attending to its slippages and failings just as much as its enduring appeal.

The Genius Loci of the Chapel (#5/#3/#2) are sculptural reinterpretations of Jim Allen and John Scott’s Futuna Chapel, Wellington (1961) and Le Corbusier’s Ronchamp Chapel, France (1955).

“‘Genius Loci’ refers to the distinctive atmosphere of a location, and in science fiction, it refers to a place with its own intelligence,” Guy explains. This characteristic is what her sculptures aim to capture: the tension of the buildings wherein they appear as expressions of a specific time, place, and vision, but also subtly unaligned with their surroundings, oriented to plural other times, places and visions.

Out of place in the natural landscape of Waiheke, Guy’s textured fibreglass columns are disruptive but transporting. Viewers might peer through one of the window-like cavities on their surface for a perspective on the familiar environment that is novel and unexpected, much like Guy’s perspective of Modernism and its legacy.


Lives and works in Auckland.

Natalie Guy has undertaken extensive formal art training since 1984 and is in the completion stage of her PhD titled ‘Translation in the Language of Sculpture’ through the Elam School of Fine Art.

She exhibits her work regularly and has participated in several major contemporary art awards: in 2014, she was awarded a Merit Award in the National Contemporary Art Award and was the inaugural recipient of an Asia NZ Foundation residency to Varanasi, India in 2017. Her work The Window was exhibited at Te Tuhi in 2020, and The Pool, her submission to Sculpture on the Gulf 2020, is now installed permanently in Christchurch.