Any particular aspect that really stands out for you in this work?
Ephemeral elements like time and endurance are key considerations. Markers and indications of experience are what stands out for me in this work. The experience of ice to skin, the experience of loss and the experience of processing grief are illustrated through this work for me.
Does this piece hold any significance to you personally? Does it represent anything to you? How does this influence other works that you do? Do you find hints of it showing up in other pieces you’ve done since?
I’ve continued with this thread of water in my work. I am very interested in the ecology of the arts, the value and the privilege placed on platforming particular narratives within institutional settings. There are inherent clues as to where my personal values lie within my works around this topic, however I am also interested in the intergenerational accumulation of wealth and the value of uncovered narratives within society. I created a work The Beauty of Invisible Grief which binds a lot of these thoughts together. An ice hei-tiki is worn and melts against the warmth of the wears skin – speaking to the invisible narratives that we each carry with us. The water incorporated within this work comes from the awa I whakapapa to – this for me, is the intergenerational accumulation of wealth I am privileged to have embedded in my whakapapa.
Does this film hold any significance to you personally? Does it represent anything for you?
Turangawaewae was a response to a situation I experienced in 2016. A young Maori man disregarded me as being Maori based on the colour of my skin. I felt as though I had to explain myself and how I have come to be who I am today, at which point I was fractionalised and told that I wasn't Maori enough. I am of both European and Maori descent. Blood Quantum is a tool implemented in America to qualify or disqualify someone belonging to their tribe which has spread throughout the world. It is dangerous for us as Maori to allow such a tool, to involve itself within our culture and change the way we treat one another. As the minority group in Aotearoa, we should be showing each other manaakitanga and whanaungatanga, not disregarding each other.
What is it about this film that makes it different from others you’ve created before?
I invested a lot of myself in the creative process of making the short film Turangawaewae. I’ve always put a part of myself into my work, but this short film helped me to realise the importance of doing so, sharing my own experiences and knowledge because of the impact it can and the conversations it can create. I haven’t made a short film since Turangawaewae came out but the experience of creating it will impact my future work.