The Only Time (2016)
Colour inkjet print, 304x152mm, framed
A study in growing up as part of a culture with a rich heritage but not having any real connection to it beyond ceremonial trappings at particular events. This is one of several images based around the emotions of the artist as he navigates through his 45 years of being in and out of the shadows cast by family in the fading light of their memories of Samoan heritage and the rising dawn of the life Aotearoa has offered his generation.
Raymond Sagapolutele is a Aotearoan born Samoan artist and self-taught photographer. He has worked for numerous editorial publications and exhibited widely in a range of group and solo exhibitions around Auckland spanning the last 10 years and is a part of the graffiti creative collective known as TMD.
“The narrative may change but the intent is always the same – honest dialogue with the viewer. My style of photography is based on observation with a little bit of the unconventional, this is not to confuse or frustrate but it is a method by which I empty my head of all the stories contained within.”
The PIMPI Winter Series kicked off on Thursday 16 July with the opening of U Can’t Touch This, a group show featuring new work by Talafungani Finau, Sione Monu, Siliga David Setoga and Daisy Tavilione.
The exhibition’s private view was well attended by friends, family, art peers and locals. Drinks were served by the beautiful Lini, and four of the 11 works were sold on the night. Plans to do an interesting ‘not Pacific art’ tattoo performance with ARTSPACE Director, Misal Adnan Yildiz were hatched, and stories and memories shared of Mt Eden’s interesting art history and shifting demographics. The shop was filled with talanoa and laughter, Island reggae and the buzzing of the tattoo machine – a dream opening!
I’m super grateful for the opportunity to work with Big Willie Legacy Barber & Tattoo Studio. Thank you to barber, Willy, for letting us share your space. And thank you Raymond Sagapolutele and Iokapeta Magele-Suamasi for taking beautiful shots on opening night.
U Can’t Touch This is up until Saturday 1 August, all artwork sold is available for collection from Monday 3 August. The next exhibition in the series, That’s not Pacific Art features new and recent work by Fa’afeu Kapeneta, ‘Ana Lakusa, Qingze Nan and Genevieve Pini. It opens on Thursday 6 August from 6-8pm at Big Willie Legacy Barber & Tattoo Studio – all welcome!