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Tessa Ma'auga

Shared Lines: Pūtahitanga exhibiting artist

Tessa Ma'auga. Nga Aho. Thread, Bamboo.

Nga Aho (2016) Thread, Bamboo 



Tessa Ma’auga has ancestral links to Guangdong, China and Langenbach, Germany. Her ancestry and upbringing and life in Aotearoa and the Pacific inform her artistic practice. Her current research explores fibre-based practices to engage in discourses related to cross-cultural relationships and histories in the Asia-Pacific region. Her passion lies in using the arts in community building and collaborative settings, to enhance collective understanding, powers of expression, and strengthen essential relationships.

Education: Bachelor Māori Visual Arts – First Class Honours Massey University 2016. Postgraduate Diploma Māori Visual Arts – Distinction Massey University 2017. Doctoral Candidate College of Creative Arts - Massey University 2018.
Awards: Indigenous Research Methodologies Conference Award 2020. National Contemporary Art Award Finalist 2018. Undergraduate Award – Highly Commended Oceania Regional Winner 2017. Massey University High Achievers Award 2016. NZ Emerging Artist Award 2016.


Shared Lines: Pūtahitanga 2020


This artwork is a reflection on images and concepts found throughout the Asia Pacific region. Origin narratives from these regions speak of the nature of humanity as one with the natural environment, as having a spiritual and physical reality, characterised by evolution and tied together by loving relationships. The positive and negative spaces in this work reflect this dual reality of spirit and body. The images are connected and shaped by each other, conveying how humanity is organic with the environment, shaping and moulding each other, and how we cannot segregate the human heart from it’s environment. With the present global pandemic affecting all of humanity, our inseparable connection, our need to help each other across countries, and to position ourselves next to each other in ways that will create harmonious beauty, patterns, and balance is ever more apparent.

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