WITCH BITCH attended TAUTAI – Pacific Arts Trust’s ‘Feathers of the Sun’ activation. An evening of performance, art and music curated by Rosanna Raymond for the Pacific Arts Association International symposium.
Photographs by Jermain Dean
UCE YOU GOT THE SCRATCH TO GO TO THE Rainbow GALA of the year!!!
NZ Room – STANDARD – ADULT
Includes drink on arrival, Canapes to die for & Cash Bar $125.00
NZ Room – EARLYBIRD – Group of 10
Get $115 tickets when purchasing in a group of 10
We get asked all the time what exclusion looks like and for all intensive purposes this still remains one of the most pointless fucking questions. Because despite telling the happy little residents of the RAINBOW space what exclusion looks like we still don’t get to sit at the same table as everyone else.
INCLUSION LOOKS LIKE ACCESS AND ACCESS LOOKS LIKE AFFORDABILITY
Just know that everyone that matters will be at this year’s RAINBOW GALA celebrating the 30 year anniversary of Homosexual Law-reform. A milestone I might add that our current and previous governments, for the span of 30 years have done very little about advocating for among the 9 neighbouring Pacific Countries that still enforce punitive laws criminalising homosexuality, countries you, our core audience probably come from.
Just know that the people that matter will be there, like the community leaders, politicians, celebrities and cardboard personalities, the rainbow bankers, the tired social workers and health advocates and all the shiny old DRAG QUEENS, and probably even all their allies that love a good old faghag extravaganza .
But you know who won’t be there is BROKE asses like you and me and us. The prevailing sentiment and one that we are used too at the arse end of the rainbow, is knowing that you don’t matter, not in these circles and systems and deffs not at these parties. For all the access and inclusion drama, this is still nothing fucking new!!
On Friday the 13th of May, FAFSWAG Arts Collective was invited to OLGA – an artist studio space belonging to Pacific curator Leafa Wilson (writer, artist, activist and Pacific curator at Hamilton Museum).
As a collective we haven’t really considered what the ‘movement’ looks like outside of Auckland and so the opportunity to transplant some of our kaupapa, discourses and swag to another region of New Zealand is something that really excited the team. We’re always reflecting on cultural transmission through our various practices and to relocate our practices and narratives from south Auckland to engage with new communities was really interesting. We found ourselves asking each other who is gonna turn out to see this? So of course it was a huge surprise to see a full house.
FAFSWAG’s resident Photographer and performance artist Pati Solomona Tyrell is originally from the Waikato and grew up in Hamilton. Activating the space had a significant importance and meaning for him. For starters at least 90% of his immediate family still reside there and a vast majority of his friends still work and study in the region. It was especially meaningful to be able to bring his family and friends into the activation entitled ‘Aitu’ and ‘Fa’aafa’ (along with Tongan artist Sione Monu and Manu Vaea) and to reflect the depth of his practice by presenting a glimpse of what he’s been up to in his absence and during the subsequent time he’s spent living in Auckland and studying at The Faculty of Creative Arts M.I.T
Pati also presented as part of the showcase a series of new works entitled ‘Aitu 2016 portrait series’ which can be viewed in their full glory below. The Images were created over a weekend of collective FAFSWAG art making. Something we do regularly this time after Easter weekend. The Promo image of the collective was taken only minutes before hand by myself and features the people we collaborate with and have consistently worked with over the past 4 years. Not really a squad but an actual creative family of Poly Rainbow identities and supporters.
Also in the house were some locals that include Waikato Queer Youth (WaQuY), Te Wananga O Aotearoa, Hamilton PRIDE committee and The Savage Club. We’re extremely grateful for all the love and support and thankful to everyone that showed up to be part of the evening. We hope that everyone was able to engage with the art and connect with the various artist from the collective.
Shout out to the Hamilton artist we shared space with in the show. Thank you to WITCH BITCH, Nahora Ioane and Moe Laga for your confronting and brave performances / activation’s. I know the performances elevated the night and left people with a great reflection of ways to express yourself on your own terms. To all the local artist we had the chance to meet, break bread and spend time with, thank you for your involvement and thank you for your talent. Thank you to Amelia Takataka for the extra studio space and Aotea Tyrell for your awesome pot of chopsuey!!!! it was the bomb!!!
Last but not least THANK YOU AUNTY OLGA for hosting the FAFSWAG arts collective. This was a great opportunity and one that afforded people the chance to build relationships, showcase diversity and connect over art and poly style creativity. We hope to be able to do some more creative swapping in the future. Thank you for your hospitality and thank you HAMILTON for the fun filled weekend.
To any of our followers based in the region please be sure to check out the work in the space. FA’AFETAI xx FAFSWAG!!!
10 x 10 Fresh Gallery Ōtara 10th Birthday
Opening Thursday May 5, 6pm
6 May – 11 June
Elisabeth Alani, Emory Douglas, Tanya Edwards, Tanu Gago, Sean Kerrigan Janet Lilo, Nicole Lim, Vea Mafile’o, Emily Mafile’o, Cerisse Palalagi Francis Pesamino, Siliga David Setoga, Visesio Siasau, Gary Silipa, Coco Solid, Keg de Souza, Louise Stevenson, Daniel Tautua, Angela Tiatia, Allen Vili
Pimp My T-shirt with Sammy Atasani
Saturdays May 7 – 4 June, 10am – 12pm
Saturday 28 May, 8am – 2pm
FRESH SHOP, art market, workshops and performances
‘In Conversation’ Leilani Kake, the early years of Fresh Gallery Ōtara, 1pm
Image: Janet Lilo, Chandelier (digital image), 2016
FAFSWAG presents JERMAINE, a character portrait of one of the artist from the FAFSWAG arts collective. We wanted to reinvigorate some renewed energy into Auckland’s underground VOGUE scene. The dancer in this video Jermaine Dean Aka Chaos is of Maori heritage and is a member of the roots Vogue scene in NZ, also working in the space as a photographer and visual artist. We wanted to apply a documentary style to capture this performance and contrast these moments against different South Auckland locations like Otara. A community known for its cutting edge contributions to the country’s art landscape. This is part of an ongoing series we will be doing throughout the year profiling and documenting Pacific LGBTQI narratives for future generations. We hope you enjoy.
“It’s a stereotype but unfortunately an accurate one.”
The Sound of the Ocean, 2015
Gago has singlehandedly paved the way for Pacific gay males to have a very strong place to stand in today’s contemporary art landscape. Younger artists like Tyrell are able to make sophisticated work like Fa’aafa because of the bridges in image construction Gago has created into mainstream culture. Because of this specific life experience, I don’t always expect to enjoy Tanu Gago’s work. But The Sound of the Ocean like ‘Formation’ is immediate, accessible and empowering. The Pah Homestead is a strange place to encounter it, but he owns it.
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