There are no bees in my garden
8 April to 3 May 2020

  1. There are no bees in my garden I
    tensile steel wire, patinated steel, found steel
    530 x 720 x 530 mm
    2020
    $3,800
  2. There are no bees in my garden V
    found hat box, tensile steel wire,
    220 x 300 x 300 mm
    2020
    $1,800
  3. There are no bees in my garden IV
    tensile steel wire, patinated steel, found steel
    650 x 720 x 25 mm
    2020
    $2,800
  4. There are no bees in my garden VI
    tensile steel wire, patinated steel, found steel
    1660 x 2400 x 1000 mm
    2020
    $7,800
  5. There are no bees in my garden II
    tensile steel wire, patinated steel, found steel
    960 x 700 x 460 mm
    2020
    $3,000
  6. There are no bees in my garden III
    tensile steel wire, patinated steel, found steel
    400 x 330 x 940 mm
    2020
    $2,500

There are no bees in my garden addresses two significant themes: colonisation and its ongoingimpact and environmental concerns related to introduced species and the alteration of the environment to better reflect a European sensibility. Central to the work are the hand-made sparrows.

Sparrows were birds brought to Aotearoa as companions and songsters by Europeans, and later were also brought by the Chinese, a further early immigrant group to New Zealand. In both instances the birds were brought as reminders of a home left behind. Transplanted to a New Zealand environment. Sparrows are unique in that they only live within the built and populated environment, in and around towns and cities.

They are not found in the New Zealand bush. They are also one of the few introduced species – different from deer, rabbits or sheep – that have not impacted the native bush or upset existing eco-systems.

Shona Rapira-Davies 2020

With thanks to Rahera Rapira-Davies, Rehutai Rapira-Davies, George Rapira Davies