Interconnectedness is a central theme in Ché Rogers work. Concentric circles radiate outward and contract inward. Each work pulses with energy and flow and brings to mind dynamic motifs found within nature such as; water ripples, oceanic waves and rays of the sun. Like rings inside a tree, his works evoke the passing of time and the layers of experience and growth acquired. Simultaneously, these symbols of circularity are like portals to realms beyond our backyard, into the cosmic, reminding us of our insignificant place in this vast, expanding universe.
Multi-disciplinary by nature, Ché enjoys blurring the lines between art, design, photography, film and sound. His practice includes paintings in which layers of colour are scratched through to reveal the metallic surface beneath, three-dimensional installation light works made from repurposed retro plasticware, and audio/visual films, such as a video that animates his Time Around series, set to a self-composed soundtrack.
Ché is also a musician, with a foray into electronic music, this aural art form inevitably seeps into his visual arts practice. Using line, pattern and repetition, he strives to emulate the resonances, vibrations and oscillations of sound waves. With their symmetry, his paintings mirror the physical forms of a spinning vinyl record (particularly when he scratches into the surface of paintings), a luminescent compact disc or the quivering membrane on a speaker. Through this sonic aesthetic he creates an impression of motion or sound without actually making kinetic work.
Sitting within the framework of Postdigital Art, Ché’s artistic practice is more concerned with being human than being digital. In both his art and music practices, Ché often explores the theme of Man vs Machine as he challenges our relationship with technology. He is particularly interested in the confusion a work might bring when it looks (or in the case of music, sounds) like it is produced by technology, but in truth human input was essential in its creation. Ultimately technology is simply a tool. Ché enjoys the ambiguity of his recent paintings which look like they have been manufactured by high-tech processes, when in fact they are meticulously hand crafted using basic, analogue, hand-jigged equipment. Overall, Ché is fascinated by art that appears to be made by machines but is in reality an expression of human creativity.
Ché is influenced by the clean and simple design of mid-century minimalism, the playfulness of Op and Pop art, and the strong colours and abstract geometric structures of Russian Constructivism and the Orphism art movements. He is equally inspired by popular culture, such as the surreal and graphically arresting film sets from the sixties in cinematic masterpieces such as 2001:A Space Odyssey and A Clockwork Orange. Ché is particularly interested in the way artists, designers and creators in the past have envisioned our future.
Arriving in Taranaki in 2003, drawn by cheap real estate and surf, Ché currently lives and works in the creative hub of New Plymouth. The coastal landscapes and his connection to the natural world inevitably surface in his work, whether it be the waves he surfs or the symmetry of Mt. Taranaki, a perfect circle from above. Ché’s engagement with permaculture, which at its heart has principles that guide humans to work in harmony with our surrounding eco-systems, relates to an aforementioned theme in his work—interconnectedness. People to nature, nature to art, art to music, music to machine, machine to people—everything is connected in some way. And in the end, always and forever, we come full circle.