Akiko Diegel's installation is visually insightful, elucidating many aspects about New Zealand's history and contemporary ideas about recycling and consumerism.
7x10 consists of a grid of stacked up blankets that have been reconfigured into what appears to be shopping bags. The labels on the blankets, such as Tasman, Chateau, Coronet and Princess from well-known woollen mills, are a reminder of New Zealand's golden days of wool manufacturing. The exhibition title, 7 x 10, makes reference not only to the floor arrangement, but also to the mathematical precision of weaving.
Blankets, enticing for their warmth and colour, have a long history in New Zealand, but their heyday is over. Diegel gives her blankets a new lease of life - the idea of a supermarket bag being mass produced is poles apart from the recycling of individual blankets.
Japanese-born Diegel lives and works in Auckland, where she completed a Masters of Fine Arts from The University of Auckland’s Elam School of Fine Arts in 2008. Diegel was a finalist in the 2007 Waikato Contemporary Art Award.