Kia ora koutou! Introducing Ashleigh Taupaki
Ashleigh is multi-disciplinary artist who specializes in sculpture. Raised in West Auckland, she now lives and works in Wellington. Ashleigh is currently studying a Master of Fine Arts at the University of Auckland, and primarily makes hard material sculptures that respond to indigenous Pacific concepts of space and place. Ashleigh also does a lot of photography, drawing, and writing that often gets left in the research pile, but it is vital to her practice because it is a raw and felt documentation of the stories and places she encounters.
Ashleigh takes us on a journey through her various previous works and exhibitions. She also shares images from Ranui, where she was going to carry out her Residency before she relocated to Pōneke. We gain an insight into the types of materials and ideas Ashleigh channels in her practice.
“This project was about loss of cultural memory and recognition through migration and its subsequent intergenerational acculturation, but also sought to highlight the importance of intergenerational connections and oral tradition within Samoan culture to reimagine and recollect that which has been lost.”Ashleigh Taupaki
Ashleigh’s final works from her Fale-ship:
Each drawing is partnered with a poem except the hibiscus poem. These works are about recapturing the stories and talanoa she exchanged with her grandmother during lockdown, she listened to her grandmother describe the plants and she drew what she imagine. These works emphasize the importance of intergenerational connections and oral traditions ingrained in Samoan culture.
Q+A Talanoa with Ashleigh and Naawie
Ashleigh and Naawie sit down to chat about the importance of oral histories to Pacific peoples and how it has influenced her art practice
Naawie: “When your Fale-ship Residency is eventually launched online what would you like people to take away from your work?”
Ashleigh: “I guess just helping people understand how important Pacific oral traditions are to Pacific peoples.”
Q+A Talanoa facilitated by:
Kanak, Anglo-Argentine, Pākeha & Mystic | Poindimé (New Caladonia)
Waiheke Island, Aotearoa
FB: Naawie Tutugoro
View all the FALE-SHIPS here