Letter to an Unwritten Future

Fiona CONNOR (b.1981)
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letter, website, agreement
Ngā Puhipuhi o Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University Art Collection, purchased 2019
Accession number
Fiona Connor’s 'Letter to an Unwritten Future' was first initiated for the Adam Art Gallery’s 2009 exhibition, 'The Future is Unwritten'. For this exhibition the artist decided to interrogate the energy efficiency of the gallery. She drafted a letter outlining a set of proposals to be monitored by the gallery and for the duration of the exhibition moved the Adam’s offices into the gallery to reduce energy use, pinning the letter to the gallery wall to explain her project.

As Connor wrote at the time of the exhibition, “When individuals walk into a space, the space is what they have in common. I am interested in being sensitive to these organisational structures and using them as movable materials. This site specific strategy allows me to consistently take part in relevant conversations with what we are faced with already when visiting a site.”

In 2015, Connor launched a website aimed at tracking the responses to the letter and illuminating shifts in thinking around energy consumption. It was predicted these will change as the threat of climate change becomes more real. Her ambition is to regularly return to the gallery, update her engagements with gallery staff and personnel in Property Services, treating the Adam Art Gallery as a single entity to be monitored over time. Though her focus is on the gallery, her ambition is use the information she compiles for the benefit of the wider community.

In 2018, Fiona Connor re-initiated contact with the gallery about Letter to an Unwritten Future. Using the letter as a starting point, Connor intended to “track how the physical space of the gallery and its operations have changed, and how attitudes of people within the institution that are influencing these things and people involved with the letter, are developing in time”.

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