Art Gallery comes alive

By Samantha Goerling ,

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Visitors analyze exhibited works of Yuki Kihara, Dr Vanya Taule’alo and Momoe von Reiche.

Visitors analyze exhibited works of Yuki Kihara, Dr Vanya Taule’alo and Momoe von Reiche.

MADD Gallery came alive on Sunday night with a one-night salon showcasing work from international artist Yuki Kihara as well as two local artists. 

The prints on display from award winning artist Kihara were a selection from her photographic series shot in Samoa and entitled ‘Where do we come from? What are we? Where are we going?’ 

Kihara explained that this title was in fact addressing the Samoan people.

“The title ‘Where do we come from? What are we? Where are we going?’ this is the question I want to pose to the community here, where are we going in Samoa?”

Each print featured a resurrected Samoan woman wearing a Victorian mourning dress at different settings around Samoa. The shots were taken in the aftermath of 2013 Cyclone Evan often in places which had already experiences other natural disasters such as Lalomanu beach.

Fata von Reiche, Artist Momoe von Reiche and
Seti Afoa with work by Momoe and Yuki Kihara.

A unique aspect of this exhibition was the exclusion of print titles which aimed to create conversation and prompt visitors to guess the location of the photograph in Samoa.

Based in New Zealand, Yuki Kihara has also been shooting new works whilst back in Samoa.

Local artist, Dr. Vanya Taule’alo explained the significance behind her thesis artwork which showcased a matriarch from both sides of her family. She highlighted that choosing family history to explore in her art meant that no one could challenge whether she is entitled to delve into the topic. 

“The great thing about family history is that you own it and you have every right to say what you like about it,” she said.

The work showcased by artist and owner of MADD gallery Momoe von Reiche included a series of prints which “celebrates woman.” 

Von Reiche’s message was broader, touching on the omnipresent nature of art. 

“Art is life. Everything you do in your life is art,” she said. “Your arguments with your wives is art. What you eat is art. The way you cook is art. The way you look at your lover is art. Everything is art. At the end of the day what comes out of the individual is expressed as art; your emotions, your feelings.”

© Samoa Observer 2016

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