Kia ora whanau,
Hope you’re all well and enjoying the sunshine today.
It’s been awhile since I’ve been on here to write a post which has become the norm this year, pre occupied by other more important things evolving in my life and also trying to be real with myself about life in general. The life of an Artist is not an easy one – nor working towards being a self- sustained one at that – so if you want it.. be prepared to work your butt off.
This year for me has been a lot of trying to keep up with real day life… Bills, work, home and family as well as creating artworks for Exhibitions, myself – for sale, comissions and trades to get my small business at a good solid foundation before next year when I will be working from home, joining the real world again as well as continue creating, promoting and networking my brand – Whirinaki Works.
There are also the other opportunities of organising avenues and plans with some very skilled people – Teachers, Mentors, MOE personnel and the ACE programme co-ordinator for the Coastal area, Sue Matthews. I have been kindly directed to help introduce the Art of Weaving and its Traditions back into ‘Society’ by making it accesssible to where they are ‘in town’ rather than at the ‘marae’ where traditionally these things would take place. After a number of meetings, demonstrations the practical workshops began where I got to work with a range of youth and children within some of the schools of Tairawhiti, Illminster Intermediate, GGHS and Te Wharau School.
Working with my current Weaving Mentor Tina Wirihana, Friend and associate Maiko Lewis, Friend and fellow Weaver Erin Rauna, and work still to be done with Sue Matthews through the ACE programme in Tairawhiti, Wairoa and the Coast as well as work to be done with Wendy Webb from MOE to improve the understanding and acceptance of Weaving as a Technology in the current system by creating a programme to be used within schools starting on the Coast (especially Primary Schools) to help our community, youth and people of the area by teaching Weaving practices with the help of some of my close friends and awesome Weavers – raising awareness of the holistic qualities of the traditional artform and how it can help our future leaders to become more aware and in touch with their own potential as well as their culture and give them a sense of pride and well-being. Now if you grew up in a mainstream environment, without your Culture – you will know how important this is for our People.
Now, to the Exhibition… it was up over the holiday period, consisting of artworks from current CSW students at Toihoukura – the mediums and kaupapa of the artworks all pertained to topics that affect our people. If you did not get to see it up, this post is for you.