With 80 artists spread across 300 glossy colour pages, Current is up-to-the minute, controversial, sexy, political, dangerous or reassuringly familiar, depending on what page you turn to. Naturally, in the sometimes volatile world of contemporary art, eddies of (unwanted) attention surround some of those represented here — photographer Bill Henson, for instance — while others occupy a quieter place in our awareness.
Among the familiar names are Simryn Gill, Paddy Bedford, Ron Mueck, Ah Xian, Tracey Moffatt, Shaun Gladwell and Del Kathryn Barton. Alongside them are fresh faces: Benjamin Armstrong, Monica Tichacek and Rohan Wealleans, girl group the Kingpins and NZ artist Richard Killeen.
The book is very much a group effort, says Art & Australia publisher Eleonora Triguboff. The magazine’s editor, Michael Fitzgerald, wrote many of the artist profiles and there are six contextual essays by critics and curators, including Robert Leonard (who gives an overview of NZ art), Victoria Lynn and Nick Waterlow.