24 Feb 2017 - 31 Mar 2017
Pati Solomona Tyrell: Fāgogo
8 Jun 2017 - 21 Jul 2017
Pati Solomona Tyrell, Vai Fāgogo (detail), 2016. Image courtesy of artist
Fāgogo in Sāmoan refers to fables that are told in a shared context. The receiver of a Fāgogo is vested with an expectation to share the story, making it their own and then passing it on. Pati Solomona Tyrell’s work unpacks the colonial gaze placed on queer brown bodies in an attempt to return gender and sexually diverse identities back to their oracle status. 'Fāgogo' in this project is situated as a restorative practice, developed with other artists and collaborators from the Pasifika LGBTIQ space in Aotearoa. Alongside the film Fāgogo, the exhibition includes Tyrell’s documentation of the community over five years, as principle photographer for FAFSWAG Arts Collective. Throughout the exhibition Gallery Two will operate as an open space for hosting, performance, sharing research, and discussion.
This exhibition is part of the Auckland Festival of Photography 2017.
Darcell Apelu, Sione Monu, Kerry Ann Lee, LI Liao, LI Jinghu, LIU Weiwei, Natalie Robertson, Salome Tanuvasa, Angela Tiatia, Vaimaila Urale
4 Aug 2017 - 8 Sep 2017
Vaimaila Urale, Koko & Taufolo (video still), 2009. Image courtesy of artist.
Food is inherently political: who it represents, how it’s shared and how it’s produced. Across Moana-nui-a-kiwa, plantations of copra, cacao, sugar, pineapple and vanilla have been the basis of multiple waves of migrant and slave labour trades, including colonial empires turning to Asia as a labour force.
While the connection of indigenous communities and Asian labour migrants initially came through colonial plantations, long-lasting relationships formed outside of this imperial canon. International attitudes towards indentured labour changed at the start of the 20th Century and indentured labour ceased in Fiji in 1920, and 1931 in Samoa and Hawaii. Fiji and Samoa went on to gain independence toward the end of the century while Hawaii still remains a colony of America. Many labourers returned to their various homelands across Asia while a significant number decided to settle in the islands long term.
For lai-pā, we focus on food as a signifier of such relationships. In both Hawaii and Samoa staple diets changed through the introduction of new Asian food technologies, such as noodles, rice and pastry. Foods such as sapasui, keke pua’a and masubi borrow from these new technologies, becoming local delicacies. Moreover, these highlight the power indigenous people have to adopt and adapt new food in their own diets, a sovereignty which doesn’t always exist in colonised lands across this vast ocean.
The plantation is a site where we not only cultivate crops but also trauma, resilience and hybridity. Through a variety of artistic approaches, lai-pā uses food and labour to open up conversations of cultural exchange across Moana-nui-a-kiwa. Through shared traumas of sorts, we can bypass the empire and talk directly to each other as we have been doing for thousands of years.