Artists: Conor Clarke, Trenton Garratt, Will Gresson, Mark Henley, Veronica Manchego, Cam O‘Connell

I Could Have Sworn I. A phrase commonly spoken when one admits their prior thinking on a matter is incorrect: Something is not what they had indeed thought it was. An inconsistency is noted between the fact, and the memory of the fact.

The show pairs Alison Landsberg’s theory of Prosthetic memory with the medical condition Phantom Limb Syndrome, creating a discourse around the potential social ramifications of how we perceive ‘experience’ within a media saturated reality. The show questions how the mind differentiates between these two realms; is differentiation necessary, and furthermore, how can this discourse be conveyed in an experiential manner.

Prosthetic memory promotes the concept that a memory is not predicated on a persons first-hand lived experiences. Thus, the mass media we consume holds the potential to build artificial memories that may necessitate emotional responses akin to our lived memories. In comparison, Phantom Limb Syndrome offers an introverted perspective toward sensory experiences. It manifests as a condition through which sufferers experience physical sensations associated with a missing / amputated limb or organ as the brain and nervous system attempt to readjust to the physical changes.

The selected artists embody the broadening international gaze that geographically isolated New Zealand has fixed upon hubs of contemporary art production. Curiosity, coupled with introversion (a position reflective of a New Zealand cultural tendency) sit alongside a desire for migration or pilgrimage towards such focal points. Paradoxically this practice is intrinsically extroverted. This looking out, projection of oneself on a global stage to reassure oneself of our position on it, affords an outward-looking perspective counter to the inherent national psyche.

I Could Have Sworn I explores this uneasy juxtaposition between introversion and extroversion within the context of sensory experience and reactio