Visual Arts Photography & Installation

I'm a visual arts student from auckland. I'm interested in popular pasifika youth culture ie. music, games and fashion.

I'll be using this blog to experiment with ideas and to archive my progress.

Contextual Statement for End of Year Installation

I once Googled images of the words ‘Pacific Islanders in New Zealand’.

On the very first page I saw:

A church

A sasa (traditional Samoan dance)

A rugby game

A graph of P.I and Maori diabetic statistics and

A picture of the words “unemployment”.

I wasn’t sure how I felt about it.

Representation as documented through a lens has always been problematic. Historically this has involved critiques regarding ‘the real’ and ‘truth’ in documentary practices. ‘You are why I am’ investigates bi-cultural Pasifika identity, in an urban landscape without stereotyping it. Identities are complex as people are influenced by social and political structures such as school, family, and work. Although experiences can be very similar each individual’s everyday experience is unique. Accordingly these moving image works address personalised life stories and experience.

‘You are why I am’ use the images, memories and thoughts of my family and friends as a springboard to discuss themes regarding diaspora, interracial relationships, class, familial histories, communal history, stereotypes and the politics of language. These memories demonstrate how something said in the name of memory can change one’s sense of being in the world. Memories are ephemeral eventually fading with time, and so the sharing of memory is precious. The installation of ‘You are why I am’ creates an intimate experience for the viewer as they are invited to witness my family and friends personal understandings i.e. who we once were, who we are now and who we will become as we are continuously being influenced and shaped by our experiences.

Louisa Afoa

Final Installation for end of year grad show at AUT University.

Bachelor of Visual Arts complete. 

Playing around with my install getting ready for the end of year graduation exhibition!!! So excited and nervous :)

Auckland's Pasifika Survey

This is a review about the show Home AKL (a great show, I fully recommend!) which is currently showing at the Auckland Art Gallery. Although I’m not in the show I do get this kind of shout out which is so awesome! 


Thursday 5th July 2012

Curated by Jeremy Leatinu’u the exhibition features work by Louisa Afoa, Cordelle Feau, Anita Jacobsen, Alana Lopesi, Pilimi Manu, Chris Ryan, Talia Smith, Salome Tanuvasa, Aaron Unasa and Cora-Allan Wickliffe. 

This must be the place showcases the work of ten tertiary art students of Pacific heritage, who confidently journey the challenging physical and conceptual landscapes of postcolonial New Zealand. Exploring the reconstruction of place and culture through colonisation and migration their works reveal the politics and subjectivities of being a Pacific Islander in Auckland, New Zealand/Aotearoa.

This must be the place suggests a consistent search for a place to belong, not realising the location of this place has been in front of us all along. This generation of emerging contemporary artists have confidently put forth their own conclusions and findings in relation to the past histories before them, affirming and cementing their own position within an uncertain and sometimes strenuous landscape. They provide refreshing and challenging perspectives that exist and deserve to be acknowledged. Affirmed and cemented, finally, we have found this place. 

First  Light 2

First  Light 2