Recently, Wellington the capital city of New Zealand has been humming with Matariki celebrations.For those that do not know what Matariki is, it is the celebration of the Pleiades constellation in the southern pacific and marks the beginning of our Māori new year.The city buzzes with exhibition openings, public performances, festivals and family gatherings.Every year it has been becoming more and more recognized and every year I try to attempt to acknowledge this season with making special Matariki jewellery.

Weaved Matariki stars to be cast in silver

I particularly want to make Kumara ( sweet potato) jewellery pieces. Matariki also marks the time in which we plant our winter harvest. I have been playing around with whale bone and wondering if i could carve or create some Kumara Whale bone pieces.

Whale bone play with arrangements

This year has been has been particularly special as I was chosen by the Wellington City council to be the Waituhi Matariki Public Flag project artist. As a “jeweller” I have to admit I was a little bit daunted by the challenge but as an “artist” truly excited about being able to share my work.

It has given me a new sense of artistic being in regards to feeling a bit more confident in the fact that I can apply my conceptual and artistic skills to other art mediums, it also makes me greatly excited about how this will affect my jewellery practice….

Having a studio at home where I can work well till after midnight also really helps.

It has opened up the doors to new ways in which I can present my work to the public or gain their engagement.I also feel by being exposed to all this Matariki excitement and culture will no doubt be a rich experience in which I can draw on to put within my work, as a way to communicate my culture through contemporary jewellery. The Wellington City council created a short video in which you can learn more about our flag project here:

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