October 23 2011
Dear Friends + Arty folk,
I hope all is well with you.
Just an update on what I am up to in Noumea – I would have loved to have made a vlog for you to watch however the internet is so slow that I can’t – which as a result has also had a huge effect on the work I have been making here on residency. I kinda thought I might use Youtube as a base but had to flag that idea quickly. Not all bad news though, just had to adopt a different working approach is all and the last two weeks have been very busy!
I guess the easier option would have been to have just brought pre-made works over and spend more time on the beach but ah no I just love a challenge to make and install new work in 3 weeks 🙂 I do have some ‘plan b’ things to rely on but I have more fun like this.
It’s not all stone cold to be fair, the ideas I have been exploring and drawing are things that have been on my mind, slowly brewing over the last year and I am so excited that I can finally respond to them artistically. What I have made and am making are a series of drawings – still and moving/ in response to ideas surrounding reality television shows that I have been slightly obsessing over since Milo was born. I have spent a great deal of time watching TV series online as a stay-at-home mum during breastfeeding and baby nap times etc. I can literally equate Milo’s progress to tv show theme lines and characters, and in a strange way TV helped me get through that time… which has been a see saw of extreme highs and lows of getting to know my new life, the new me, my body and mind in relation to all of these changes. As a woman the experience of birth was overwhelming and so empowering but then the following months post birth I often felt so very self conscious of myself and I guess in ways I still do. Initially I was going to make works about a few different shows that I was watching and mash it together but I decided to keep it really simple and look at just one show – Tyra Bank’s America’s Next Top Model.
In this body of work I have taken Images of myself using my laptop webcam in photo booth and then digitally reconstructed my face into the faces of every Top Model winner from the previous 16 cycles. Admittedly my Photoshop experience is fairly limited so It’s been quite a challenge trying to get it right – I’m probably happy with 50% of the images and could def work on getting better. My other component has been to then digitally transfer these ‘model’ self portraits on to bus stops and billboards from around Noumea. In the last week it has been very windy and I have found it a little hard to get completely still shots as I want there to be movement surrounding bus stops and billboards to make it look believable – currently halfway with the video and so far things look great. I’m printing the 16 ‘model’ images A5 size, glossy and on raised foamboardy thingy – picking those up tomorrow so fingers crossed they look good.
So yeah, I’m pretty happy with where this is going and I’m looking forward to growing this body of work into a larger scale exhibition – Maybe add a full length runway and draw on other TV shows to respond to… I have found it very challenging making self portrait work and the process has been really awkward but I’m happy with the process.
The group show I am involved with at the Tjibaou Cultural Center is called ‘Rituals’ and features work by Emma Febvre-Richards, Ani Oneil, three artists from New Caledonia (Jean-Jaques Poiwi, Stephanie Wamytan, Florence Parawai) and myself.
Thank you for your time – just thought I’d shared that with you.
Lots of Love
PolyFresh TV / Creative Native
Directed by Vea Mafileo 2012
A mish mash Installation that comprised of Top Model, Massey University residency works, our family portrait and loaned furniture courtesy of the Salvation Army in Henderson. The walls were painted with 4 litres of ‘Westside’ Resene paint to signal the galleries location and the experimental lounge-like install responds to the galleries former life as a function home.