“Human bodies are like household appliances — we have two sides of imperfect symmetry — which is easily taken for granted when we navigate the world around us. Many moana-dwellers have radial symmetry, like starfish, sand dollars, car tyres, jellyfish, bottlecaps and kāeo (sea tulips). After hatching from an egg, a kāeo begins their life as a tadpole, and eventually they attach their mouth-end to a rock where their body morphs into a stalked, fleshy alien tulip. Human tadpoles can’t do that unfortunately.” – Louie Zalk-Neale
Louie Zalk-Neale performs to activate a sculptural taonga, a blue plastic barrel that enables several people to direct their focus along radiating tendrils to the central moana-filled vessel. Intricately woven kawe (strapping) made from tī kōuka (cabbage tree leaves) holds seven kōhatu (rocks) bound to the end of each taura (rope), including pounamu (jade and serpentine), ōnewa (graywacke), kōkawa (andesite), tokauku (shale), and takawai (quartz) sourced from Kā Tiritiri o te Moana (the Southern Alps) and from Taranaki. Tī kōuka fibre is customarily used for fishing lines and waka bindings because it lasts a long time before breaking down in sea water. Louie has used it to bind carved pungapunga (pumice stones) which float inside the plastic barrel, their form mimicking the kāeo sea tulip.
The barrel and its technical jewellery were made by Adam Ben-Dror (Ashkenazi, Sephardi, Tangata Tiriti), who is an artist who looks to the masses of human-generated scraps of overconsumption with opportunistic eyes and reconfigures e-waste and plastic into new forms, imagining new ways of co-existing with the more than human world in troubled times. Part of the sculpture, a carved pounamu mauri stone named Tuāhine Pouhanga (sisters of creation) was contributed by Neke Moa (Ngāti Kahungunu ki Ahuriri, Kāi Tahu, Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Tūwharetoa), an adornment and object artist who reveals whakapapa and connection by bringing together pattern and forms from the atua and their stories. Ngā mihi ki a Dr Tāwhanga Nopera, Paula Conroy, Yuval Zalk-Neale, Ann Shelton, Aroha Jensen, Whiro Walker, and Gus Fisher Gallery for tautoko in creating this work.
Pawa runs on the contributions of our event goers and public funding.
We believe performance art should be assible to everyone, thats why majority of our shows are open to the public, however if you have funds to spare please consider contributing.