A Sāmoan (Laulii, Malie, Leufisa, Tufulele) / Chinese Visual Artist, Contemporary Pacific Jeweller, Designer, Florist & Lei Maker
Postcards Unlocked #35
My name is Fa’amele Etuale I completed a Bachelor in Creative Arts and an Advanced Diploma in Jewellery at Manukau Institute of Technology. As an artist, my passion stems from my formative nature as a painter and maker. Contemporary jewellery offers a medium to capture and archive memories through the objects I create. My process is indicated by pivotal moments in life, adornment has created a structure for me to encase, reflect and release emotion.
Through contemporary jewellery, I am able to capture the past and deliver it into the now conceptual and use contemporary methods to tell my stories and through this there is healing, have the ability to comfort others and grow. The narrative behind my work comes from a dark place where there is great pain, sorrow where there is no hope.
I am not afraid of vulnerability because it belongs to me. God gives me direction and confidence in what I do, and through these gifts he has given me I am encouraged to share and reach people who I need to meet for them to reach their destination.
My family are the paddles that help my canoe through the seas, God is the anchor and my parents and sister who have passed on are the stars I look to when I need strength and courage to continue this work. I have dedicated my life to my Art and every time I felt like giving up I am reminded of my dad the Orator, musician, artist who never got the chance to share his experience and gifts with the world and I realize the privilege that I have. My husband of 20 years Gasu Apelu Etuale from Tufulele and my children have been the force behind me and my siblings who walk beside me. They are all part of the armour I wear with honor and love every day.
I love to work in metal to modernize and preserve the objects that I create that are influenced by my cultural identity. My Samoan/Chinese DNA enriches my concepts and vision, taking it to another dimension where my skill level and thinking are challenged.
Art is my life’s work and I will continue telling stories and making art till the end of my days.