19 Dec 2017

With funding support from The Arts Society Hawkes Bay, New Zealand’s Hastings City Art Gallery saw the artist Edith Amituanai work alongside students of the Kimi Ora Community School, Flaxmere as their first artist-in-residence in early 2017.

Over five weeks the artist Edith Amituanai, an award-winning artist known for her photography depicting stories of migration, domesticity and transitional sites, worked with students of Flaxmere’s Kimi Ora School which supports a diverse community of students, in a series of workshops. Amituanai shared with the students a variety of photographic techniques encouraging them to explore their rich community with pictures of their families, friends and school life.

Funding from The Arts Society Hawkes Bay ($2000 NZ) supported the artist and students in the creation of a collaborative exhibition from June to September 2017 at Hasting’s City Art Gallery including over 50 photographs, a friendship book documenting the relationships in the community and the residency itself, and a sculpture created by the students based on ideas from their everyday life and play as well as a “selfie booth”, a photographic studio set up by the artist Edith Amituanai.

Photographs were taken by the children of their everyday lives, their interactions in and around school and at home, Amituanai opening the dialogue with the students about their audience, and about how their photographs might be received by people who don’t know them.

The collaboration was documented through videos and images shared on social media using #keeponkimiora which are available to view online and act as an archive of the children’s and artists experience through the duration of the residency.

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