Simon Kerr: Stuck in the Middle of Me



The Depot Artspace is proud to present an exhibition of new paintings by Simon Kerr, running from 26 August until 16 September.

Simon Kerr, one-time member of the infamous Hole-in-the-Wall gang, prison escapee and activist has turned his remarkable talents to painting, creating a body of work which is both narrative and allegorical, the story of his life and redemption and a commentary on the place of human beings in the world. These works are often autobiographical in nature, exploring Kerr’s controversial history and his Devonport upbringing.

Simon Kerr gained notoriety in the 1980s when he set up the Hole in the Wall Gang (complete with t-shirts!). He also made headlines throughout the 1980s for numerous escapes from custody, including from Mt Eden and Paremoremo prisons. He stowed away on a cargo ship to Australia after escaping from Mt Eden in 1987. In 1994 he mounted a 13-day rooftop turret protest against remand conditions in Mt Eden that ended with the Armed Offenders’ Squad forcibly bringing him down.

Scattered throughout the many years Simon has been imprisoned during his adult life, he has continued to write manuscripts, some of which have been optioned by significant directors, including Ian Mune. In the last few years Simon has concentrated on his painting – a skill that he continues to build on and that is winning him broad recognition and acclaim.

I am not looking to be accepted by society, I want to contribute to it. I don’t want to add my mess to it in a destructive way. As I have in the past. I want to give all that mess a home. For good.  A place where it won’t cause any trouble for anyone. A picture on a wall is a safe place for it all to live now and a place where people can look at it and say ….. “Well, thank f**k that’s all over, things were getting messy there”. – Simon Kerr, 2015

Simon Kerr art on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/simon.kerr.artist?fref=ts