Opening reception during Ethiopian new years
September 22, 11:00 AM - 4:30 PM
Exhibit on view Sept. 1 - Sep. 25, 2018
My artwork deals with culture, landscape and music. They emphasize cultural clothes and styles used in different parts of Ethiopia. My artwork also touches on music, expressing various emotions of the soul. Most of them are realistic arts while some are non-realistic ones. I used watercolor, oil color, acrylic and ink.
Coqa/Collision: New art from Fiji
Opening reception: Friday, October 5, 5 - 8 PM
Exhibit on view September 29 - October 24, 2018
Fijian artist Waqa Vuidreketi explores the use of found materials and raw materials such as beeswax, tree resin, tapa cloth, and mangrove sap combined with oil pastel to reinterpret concepts of indigenous identity and the organic relationship between Pacific people and their land. He is particularly keen to explore themes such as the collision between modern and traditional values systems, perceptions of identity by young urban Fijians and addressing modern-day challenges using traditional methods of discourse, problem-solving, and knowledge. He continues to push the boundaries of his art as an indigenous expression in a constantly changing world.
Waqa delves into these issues by exploring representations of Fijian culture and religion. Waqa reinterprets and unpacks the traditional use of repetitious motifs on tapa to engage with the audience and challenge preconceived notions of indigenous identity and its representation. In particular, Waqa is interested in further understanding and exploring specific motifs printed on taunamu ni Viti, tapa used in wedding ceremonies to shield the couple from public view.
In his current practice, he experiments with materials to experience and convey a state of flux. Working in mixed media, Waqa creates a dialogue between past and present, rural and urban, traditional and contemporary. Performances involving fire, layering, and painting are informed by his personal memories, indigenous knowledge, and historical research.
Waqa was born in Suva, Fiji and now living in the village of Lomanikoro in the Rewa Province. He was a community youth worker for many years before following his passion of art making. Through working with the community, Waqa was exposed to the challenges facing our society and the environment. He has represented Fiji in the 2012 and 2016 Pacific Arts Festivals, and exhibited across Fiji and in international galleries.