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I love being the South Auckland / Pacific Arts cultural ambassador for Nights on Radio New Zealand. In January, we discussed SOUTH – a publication I have co-edited with Nigel Borell. Issue 2 of SOUTH was launched on 12 January at Papakura Art Gallery and is available for free at art centres and libraries throughout South Auckland. We’re really proud of Issue 2 and excited to start entertaining new stakeholder relationships for Issue 3.

Find SOUTH on Facebook here and read more about the cover image here

 

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SOUTH Issue 2 (2013)
For the past six months I’ve worked with my long-time collaborator, Nigel Borell to produce a second issue of the free arts publication, SOUTH.

We established SOUTH in 2010 as co-editors and launched the first issue in January 2011 at Fresh Gallery Otara. Despite significant changes in budgets, energy and employment, Nigel persisted with the vision and Issue 2 was born. His hard work has attracted investment and financial support from Manukau Institute of Technology (Faculty of Creative Arts) and the Creative Communities Scheme, all of which has enabled me to return to the shared editorial role in a freelance capacity. We’re excited to be working with a new group of stakeholders and look forward to extending the investment opportunities for Issue 3!

Nigel and I have a close working relationship with Edgar Melitao, SOUTH’s design partner and artistic director. Choosing a front cover image is a highlight of the design and editorial process; it seems to bring everything together and galvanise the conviction of the publication.

I produced an experimental fashion editorial for SOUTH Issue 2 working with local designers Melissa Cole, Genevieve Pini and Tyrone Tautiepa. Shot on location in the South Auckland suburbs of Otara, Middlemore and Papatoetoe, the designers were challenged to research and develop, style and direct their own shoots with photographer, Vinesh Kumaran.

 

The SOUTH Issue 2 cover shot was styled and art directed by Otara-based Samoan artist and designer, Genevieve Pini. Pairing her own design, the Miss Lavalava skirt (featured in the 2012 Cult Couture fashion award show) with a limited edition chopped & screwed YOU LOVE MY FRESH t-shirt by Tanu Gago (a Mangere-based Samoan artist) she wanted her image to be fierce and empowered, and to represent an homage to her hood.

As a cover, this image represents the defiant and robust nature of the South Auckland arts sector: its strength, urbanity, Pacific Island cultural richness and unique vernacular. As a representation of the Pacific Island body, it is empowered, relatively unedited and unapologetically XXL. As the model and producer of this image, I love that it enabled an artist to engineer her own representation.

SOUTH is a free annual arts publication published by Toi o Manukau. It is available at art centres and libraries throughout South Auckland and at selected art spaces in the Auckland region.

Join SOUTH on Facebook to comment, share and engage with the SOUTH community.

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I modeled this skirt for Otara-based Samoan artist and designer, Genevieve Pini for an experimental fashion editorial in the upcoming issue of SOUTH, coming out January 2013. Genevieve has often talked about how much she wanted the garments she created for South Auckland’s annual fashion and wearable art competition, Cult Couture, to be modeled by chunkier models. The editorial was an opportunity for each of the invited designers to present their garments, style and ideas in a way they had complete control over. Genevieve identified this alleyway near where she lives in Otara; she wanted to show her hood, her environment, her comfort zone as her inspiration. It came together really nicely and I can’t wait to see the final images in print.

With a few additions, this piece entitled Miss Lavalava was customised to fit me for the SOUTH photo shoot. The garment was made for the Recycled Revolution category of this year’s Cult Couture event. It is made of a recycled rice sack, a nylon carry-bag and meters and meters of fabric scraps. Genevieve observed the construction technique on a recent trip to Samoa where it is commonly used to make floor mats for the bathroom and doorway areas.

I also loved wearing Miss Lavalava to the 2012 Arts Pasifika Awards in Wellington earlier this month where it attracted a lot of attention! I was proud to represent an artist from South Auckland whose practice I’ve been watching and appreciating for the past 10 years.

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I’m currently writing a profile on Otara-based Samoan visual artist, Genevieve Pini for the upcoming issue of SOUTH.

Genevieve went to McAuley High School in Ōtāhuhu before studying at Manukau School of Visual Arts (now MIT Faculty of Creative Arts) and NZ Fashion Tech. She has regularly featured in South Auckland’s annual fashion competition, Cult Couture and shown numerous times at Fresh Gallery Otara.

I’ve always loved this photograph Genevieve shot in 2004. She took it at the house where she got her malu (traditional Samoan female tattoo) in Otara.I love the light on the subject’s shoulder and all the South Auckland signifiers.

I’m interested in Genevieve’s attitudes towards exhibiting, making and being tattooed, and enjoying the process of writing about her.

SOUTH is an annual publication about Māori and Pacific arts and culture in South Auckland. The upcoming issue will be launched on Saturday 12 January 2013 at Papakura Art Gallery. More info coming soon!

 

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I’m producing a fashion editorial for the upcoming issue of SOUTH, an arts publication I co-edit with Nigel Borell about Maori and Pacific arts and culture in South Auckland. Three South Auckland designers will be styling a series of concept images about their inspiration, space, style and creative conviction. I tagged along with Samoan designer Genevieve Pini to find an alleyway as a location for one of her ideas. This alleyway in between Dawson Road and Zelda Avenue in Otara was a winner.

In a sea of ‘Council brown’ (the colour so many urban spaces are painted in an effort to discourage tagging and graffiti), a banana tree towers over the rickety tin fence in a burst of tropical greens. I love it.

SOUTH Issue will be launched at the opening of Concealed Ancestors at Papakura Art Gallery, South Auckland on 12 January 2013!

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