Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Two Corner Kete 

Latest variations on the two corner kete theme with copper or silver detail with smoky quartz, tear drop (glass), moonstone and quartz. 

Available at NorthArt  Pre Christmas Show. Opening 24 November and runs to the 18th December 2013, Norman King Building, Northcote, Auckland, NZ.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Piupiu Cross & Kete

The Greek Cross is frequently a representation of the world into four elements (Chevalier, 1997) or cardinal points, with the concept of divinity represented in the vertical line, and the world in the horizontal line (Koch 1955).  

The cross is a symbol frequently seen in New Zealand art.  In this piece the feather represents the connection to the divine, many cultures use feathers as an esteemed decorative element, one reason is the ability of birds to fly in the heavens with the gods.   I frequently use stones to 'ground' my weaving, often the stone will relate to a special place in New Zealand, here the stones represents the link to the land, the world.

Piupiu Cross
Materials: New Zealand Flax/Harakeke (Phormium Tenax) and commercial dye. Copper detail, stone and feather
Dimensions: 70mm W x 250mm H
Price $99

Two Corner Kete

Materials: New Zealand Flax/Harakeke (Phormium Tenax) and commercial dye. Copper, Paua and stone
Handle: Three ply plaited handle finished with Copper detail.
Dimension approximately: 155mm W x 85mm H  x 70mm D
Price $99

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Muka Kete Peacock - 2013

This Muka Kete is a fusion of traditional Maori weaving techniques and a Victorian style crotchet purse using emerald green peacock feathers, a species of bird introduced to New Zealand in the 1840's.

Materials: Muka fibre, Peacock Feather, Copper detail
Dimensions: 300  W x 200 H x 85 D mm
Price: $1,380

This kete has been made in the traditional Maori finger weaving technique called whatu with fibre/muka from the New Zealand flax plant (harakeke).  Once the fibre has been exposed from the leaf, 20 to 25 strands have been hand-rolled on the leg to create a twine. The fibre has then been dyed black. 

Three to four peacock feathers have been attached at every second strip called whenu.  Additional rolled muka has been added on the final row before finishing with a mawhititwhiti detail at the top of the bag. 

Draw strings pull the bag closed and the handle can be adjusted to the length of a shoulder bag.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Treasure Pouch & Kete

This Treasure Pouch, which closes with a finely woven flap, has natural golden hues often seen in unboiled New Zealand flax/harakeke. The fine, 2mm weaving strips, lends an old world feel to both of these pieces.

Inside there is a draw string of muka, the fibre that is extracted from the leaves of the flax bush,  with a decorative tag of white and grey rooster feathers.

Treasure Pouch
Materials: Unboiled New Zealand Flaz/Harakeke (Phormium Tenax), Muka fibre and Rooster Feather 
Dimensions: 170 W x 145 H x 75 D
Price: $125 SOLD

The Kete Whakapuareare is woven with with rows of decorative openings.  In some areas of New Zealand the diving kete called kawhiu has similar openings to the decorative openings of the kete whakapuareare.  (Pendergrast, 1984)

Kete Whakapuareare
Materials: Unboiled New Zealand Flax/Harakeke (Phormium Tenax)
Dimensions: 300 W x 160 H x 45 D
Handle: Double, three ply plaited handle
Price $365

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Black & Boa Clutch

This simple clutch purse is inspired by the classic Bottega Veneta Knot Clutch which is a collaboration between artisan and designer.  

Their signature intrecciato woven leather is made in the same nature as the Maori 'raranga' or cross weave technique.  Where the Italian designer uses leather this clutch is made purely from natural fibres sourced from the New Zealand flax plant know as harakeke.

The Ostrich feathers create a constant delicate movement that is slightly whimsical and playful in nature and the clutch is closed with a brass flower detail.

Materials: Harakeke (dyed with commericial dye), 
Brass Clasp, Ostrich & Marabu Feather Boa
Dimensions 220 W x 155 H x 90 D mm
Price: $335

Photograph source: purseblog

See the Bottega Veneta website for more images of their beautifully crafted pieces.  

Sunday, June 9, 2013

White & Stone Kete - Retro Series NYC (2013)

A purse inspired by a Christian Dior necklace of my mothers.  

White & Stone Purse
Materials: PVC Webbing, Cut Glass Bead, Quartz Stone, Moonstone Pieces
Handle: Clear Plastic four-ply plaited handle
Dimensions: 5 ½” (h) x 8 ½” (w) x 3 ¼” (d)
140mm(h) x 215mm(w) x 85mm(d)
Collection of the artist
Woven using traditional kete whakairo (basket decorated with pattern) technique with a whakatutu pattern (upward twill).  

Materials were sourced locally. White quartz. moonstone and cut glass beads, along with the reflective quality of the clear plastic plaited handle, highlight the pure whiteness of the PVC webbing creating a luminescent kete.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Whakakitaratara (Serated Edge) Lock off Method

A serated edge lock off that I often use to finish a kete (bag) or tauira (sampler)

Tauira (2011)
Harakeke (New Zealand Flax)
Plain (boiled) and black (commercial dye)

Whiri Kete - Whakakitaratara (2011)
Plain (boiled) and red (commercial dye).  
Pāpaka pattern (Pendergrast, 1984)

See the following link for Instructions.

Transactions and Proceedings of the Royal Society of New Zealand 1868-1961
Volume 54, 1923, p 737
Art. 45.—Maori Plaited Basketry and Plaitwork: I, Mats, Baskets, and Burden-carriers.
By Te Rangi Hiroa (P. H. Buck), D.S.O., M.D.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Cambodian Rattan - The Sculptures of Sopheap Pich

Cambodian Rattan
The Sculptures of Sopheap Pich

The Metropolitan Museum of Art
February 23–July 7, 2013

Contemporary Cambodian artist living and working in Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Born in 1971 in Battambang, Cambodia; 
1999, MFA in painting, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, USA

Pich works in the traditional materials of his Cambodian culture, principally rattan and bamboo.  

Materials are harvested from the environment around him and the skills required are known to everyone. Pich is subverting the traditional into contemporary forms.

Combining his training as a painter with the spatial conceptualization of a sculptor his sculptures are open-weave forms that are solid and ethereal, representational and abstract.

Buddha 2 (2009)  
Medium: Rattan, wire, dye 
Dimensions: H. 100 in. (254 cm); W. 29 in. (73.7 cm); D. 9 in. (22.9 cm)

 "I am having a lot of fun, and just doing what I love to do. I like what I am doing right now, because I am not thinking first about its purpose or theme. It’s all about playing. I just want to be a kid for a while and play with sculpture."

More details at The Metropolitan Museum

Asia Art Archive in America invited artist Sopheap Pich to discuss his practice as well as the Cambodian art scene.  Presentation by Sopheap Pich talks of his art practice and experiences as an artist.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Gutai: Splendid Playground, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, NYC 
February 15–May 8, 2013

The Guggenheim commissioned the artist to recreate Motonaga Sadamasa’s magisterial Work (Water) for the rotunda, where he hangs common, polyethylene tubes of varying widths filled with brightly-colored water between the rotunda levels, making giant brushstrokes out of catenaries in the open air that catch the sunlight (Work [Water], 1956/2011).

Guggenheim website

The Gutai group (具体; means "Embodiment") is the first radical, post-war group in Japan. Founded by Jiro Yoshihara in Osaka, Japan, 1954, in response to the reactionary artistic context of the time and  involved in large-scale multimedia environments, performances and theatrical events.

Yoshihara wrote the manifesto for the Gutai group in 1956. The full text of the "Gutai Manifesto" is available in English at the website of Japan's Ashiya City Museum of Art & History [2]. Among its preoccupations, the manifesto expresses a fascination with the beauty that arises when things become damaged or decayed. The process of damage or destruction is celebrated as a way of revealing the inner "life" of a given material or object:

"Yet what is interesting in this respect is the novel beauty to be found in works of art and architecture of the past which have changed their appearance due to the damage of time or destruction by disasters in the course of the centuries. This is described as the beauty of decay, but is it not perhaps that beauty which material assumes when it is freed from artificial make-up and reveals its original characteristics? The fact that the ruins receive us warmly and kindly after all, and that they attract us with their cracks and flaking surfaces, could this not really be a sign of the material taking revenge, having recaptured its original life?...." [3]

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Two Corner Kete - Perth, WA (2013)

Materials: Seaweed, Parakeet Feather, Seed Pod

Continuation of the variations possible in weaving a two corner kete, this is woven with fine seaweed found of City Beach and finished with a simple whiri lock off.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Murray Walker - Melbourne Artist

Walker, whose work is in art collections all over Australia, is a youthful 76 and a bit of a rare beast himself. He created what he calls the Academy of the Found Object, described by Scott Livesey Galleries as a collection of ''common objects which have been flattened, ripped, sawn or otherwise mutilated and cast off - seemingly of little value to anyone except an artist with Walker's maverick eye''. In 1978 he held an exhibition of such bric-a-brac at the National Gallery of Victoria, leading to one critic dubbing him the ''rag and bone man of Australian art''.

Like Sir John Soanes brilliant illusionism in the way he created the lighting of his collection using natural light, oil burners and candles, way before the invention of electricity, Murray Walkers brilliance lies in creating a sense of illusionism in his art, the way a found object, a memento, becomes something else, transformed by the artists eye and hand.  As he told the late Gary Catalano in 1997, I want to create something from my own experience, which for me is Australia.  Im very much a person who works from observation and experience, from what I sense and feel whether its rural life and bushwalking or cafes and dives. Im not a person who seizes style from  

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Sculpture by the Sea - Cottesloe (Perth, WA) March 2013
Veronica Herber - Slowness Shifting V

Helping to install Veronica Herbers' slowness shifting V at Cottesloe Beach in Perth (Western Australia) was such a great experience.   

These rocks jut out into the sea so attaching the masking tape with the salt, sand, spray and heat in just three days was a challenge and working with Veronica and Regina made it lots of fun.    

Veronica's intention to have "no distinct pattern" in the layout of the tape was an interesting contradiction for me where raranga/maori weaving is so much about working in patterns.  

Veronica Herber is an installation artist based in Auckland. New Zealand.  She works in a variety of media but mainly masking tape.  

"Over time I have developed a masking tape webbing that has qualities of camouflage and the ability to shapeshift its way from surface to surface transforming spaces and ultimately itself."

Check out her website to see more of her work at Veronica

Regina (from Germany) and I 

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

 Two Corner Kete - Auck, NZ (2013)

Simple two corner kete variations 

Harakeke - (commercial black dye), copper, stone and shell

Harakeke,  muka (fibre) and stone

Harakeke,  muka (fibre), kereru feather and polished clear quartz