Otara At Night by Rebecca Ann Hobbs

Rebecca Ann Hobbs

Title: Otara at Night
Date: 2011
Edition: 2/10
Series: From a series of video works shot in South Auckland spaces, influenced by dance.
Medium: Lightjet Print
Dimensions: 330x250mm

Artist Statement

Occupying the Fairmall stage, in Otara, late at night. Otara at Night is part of a series of video works shot in South Auckland spaces, influenced by dance. Dancehall refers to a genre of music that originates from Jamaica, but it is also a term that indicates an entire culture in which music, dance, fashion and community collide. For example the more flamboyant and dexterous a dancehall queen’s performance the more she is able to represent her hood at a “Sound Clash”[1] event. Social and political change is the platform from which dancehall culture evolved; a change in politics from Manley’s PNP to Seaga’s JLP created shifts in the local economic structure of Jamaica. This movement allowed people to start advancing out of the confines of their previously prescribed socioeconomic status. Again the aforementioned dancehall queen can maintain her own beauty business during the week and perform at the “Sound Clash” on the weekend, dressed in the full dancehall regalia that her small business finances. In this moving image work we watch a South Auckland queen take Otara as her stage to perform her nocturnal dance. This video work is intended as a celebration of dancehall and the reinterpretation of culture through site.

Video by: Rebecca Ann Hobbs
Dancer: Amelia Lynch
With Help From: Tanu Gago, Leilani Kake, Graeme Marshall and Ema Tavola.

[1] Sound clash – a musical competition where crew members from opposing dancehall sound systems pit their skills against each other.


Australian born Rebecca Ann Hobbs is a contemporary fine art practitioner and currently academic staff at the Manukau Institute of Technology in Otara, Auckland. Working with new media to create video and still images that address issues around class, gender and race. Hobbs has been selected to participate in many international exhibitions at notable institutes such as; the Reiss-Engelhorn-Museen in Germany, the Centre Pompidou in France and the National Gallery of Victoria in Australia. In 2002 Hobbs received the Australian Samstag International Visual Arts Scholarship, allowing her to undertake tertiary education at the California Institute of the Arts, where she completed a Masters in Fine Arts in 2005.

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