“Inspired by my culture, from the Weavers of My tŪpuna”
Ko Rangitane, Ngati Kahungunu te Iwi, Ko Manawatu Awa, Ko Ruahine Maunga, Ko Kurahaupo te Waka, Ko Makirkiri te Marae.
I have always loved to paint and my artworks reflect my love of colour, geometric design and my cultural heritage. I am of Ngāti Kahungunu, Rangitāne and Pākehā descent, living in Wellington, New Zealand. My Māori heritage was and remains important in my life and in my art. After leaving school I studied Contemporary Māori Design at Wellington Polytechnic. It was there that I was honoured to have my designs selected to decorate two frosted glass panels for the doors of the No1 Court in the new High Court building then being built in Wellington. They are still there today.
Meeting the man who would become my husband, and the subsequent arrival of my three beautiful children, meant that for long periods there was no time or space for my paint and brushes. However, I continued over the years to paint and take art classes when I could. Recently, with my children becoming independent, it has been a great privilege to have the time and space to paint full time in 2017.
I am passionate about the patterns of tukutuku which are the woven wall panels seen in whare tipuna, or meeting houses. My work is contemporary expression of negative-positive design elements of customary patterns evident in tukutuku (cross stitch weaving) and taniko (geometric weaving). Old or new, these patterns each convey different meanings, mythology and experiences. I have strong memories from my childhood of the tukutuku at the marae where my grandparents’ tangi (funeral) was held. It was an occasion where I had, perhaps for the first time, a strong sense of belonging and cultural identity.
PAST AND FUTURE EXHIBITIONS
10 July - 16 August 2020 - My first solo exhihibition, RARANGA at Pataka Art + Museum, Porirua, Wellington, New Zealand
24th September - 25 November 2019 - Huakina - to open, Expressions Whirinaki, Upper Hutt, New Zealand. (Charity event supporting Victim Support)
12th - 28th October 2018 - The Little Sprouts Charity Art Event + Art Auction. Group show at Pataka Art + Museum, Porirua, Wellington, New Zealand (Donation)
29th June 2018 - Aho Tapu O Matariki Exhibition. Group show, Kura Gallery, Wellington, New Zealand
31 May 2018 - 4 June 2018 The NZ Art Show, TSB Arena, Wellington, 31 May 2018 - 4 June 2018
January 2018 - 2019 Cover illustration, Māori Word A Day and Māori Phrase a Day by Hemi Kelly, Penguin Random House NZ
29th July 2017 - Mana Wahine Exhibition. Group show, Wellington, New Zealand
KURA GALLERY - 19 Allen St, Te Aro, Wellington and 95A Customs St W, Auckland.