Samoan-Japanese multimedia performance artist Shigeyuki Kihara brings her ground-breaking, gender-bending work to New York in the first solo exhibit by a Pacific artist at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Kihara’s striking multidisciplinary work draws on diverse sources such as 18th Century ethnographic photographs, Samoan legends and pop culture images to riff on themes of gender, identity, indigenous Pacific spirituality, consumerism and cross-cultural encounters.
The exhibit includes work from her photographic series Black Sunday, Fa’a Fafine: In a Manner of a Woman, Fale Aitu: House of Spirits and Vavau: Tales from Ancient Samoa, in which Kihara investigates notions of representation by interpreting her own image in a variety of guises.
Kihara will perform her solo performance Taualuga: The Last Dance and speak about her work during October.
Shigeyuki Kihara: Living Photographs
October 7, 2008–February 1, 2009
Lila Acheson Wallace Wing, 1st floor
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Artist bio at Pasifika Styles
Nesian Mystik breaks it down
Nesian Mystik’s new single breaks down urban Aotearoa Polynesian culture for its growing global audience.
Rapper Sabre, aka Feleti Strickson-Pua, tells Spasifik Magazine that when traveling overseas they found fans didn’t know much about the band’s culture, “so it’s going back to the basics of who we are.”
Lyrics celebrate their Auckland roots in Samoan, Tongan, Aitutaki (Cook Islands) and Maori cultures, where you can “spot the Polys from a mile away” in their white-on-white sneeks, aloha shirts, socks with jandals and “that greenstone around your neck”.
Luke Sharp is the video director. “We asked him for a video that was alive, bright and vibrant … that people watching and listening could relate to,” says Sabre. “For example, palagis might not understand some of our lyrics talking about island food,” in their paean to fried corned beef, two minute noodles, one-dollar chips and a free cuppa tea.
Nesian 101 is the first single from their forthcoming album Elevator Musiq due out soon.
Tuis to Scribe & Te Vaka
Pan-Pacific musicians Te Vaka and Samoan-kiwi rapper Scribe dominate Aotearoa’s 2008 Pacific Music Awards.
Scribe takes the Tui for Best Song and Best Male Artist with Say it Again from his new album Rhymebook.
11-piece Te Vaka won Best Group and Best Album for Olatia.
“Pacific music has been a trailblazer for race relations, social responsibility and expressing human joy in Aotearoa and the Pacific region,” says Pacific Music Awards Chair Rev. Mua Strickson-Pua.
Scribe: Say it Again
Scribe’s Say it Again music video showcases his cousin, R&B diva Tyra Hammond, in a retro tribute to kiwi 60s pop. The open features New Zealand TV icon Peter Sinclair from the classic music show C’mon.
Say it Again is produced by Auckland’s Zoomslide and directed by prolific kiwi music video maker Adam Jones.