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Haeata Community Campus

Region: Canterbury/Chatham Islands

Art form: Visual Arts

Project name: Whakaahua

Creative name

Project information: Kaupapa of this project: Whakaahua - to acquire form, transform, to image, fashion, etc. To create a positive narrative about the rangatahi that attend Haeata in order to challenge some of the negative stories and perceptions about Haeata, Aranui, and our rangatahi. By exploring visual storytelling through the medium of photography, and using the school’s cultural narrative as a framework, ākonga will tell stories about themselves/Haeata/Aranui and communicate them to the local and wider community. 

Creative outcomes: 

  • mini exhibition at school in week 10 of the 1st student project 
  • photographic works exploring the concept of narrative in photography and the stories about themselves/Haeata/Aranui 
  • final exhibition in weeks 19-20, both in town and locally 
  • photographic works further exploring the ideas and narratives shown in the 1st student project using the school’s cultural narrative as a framework. 

The concept of ‘model artist’ is integral to NCEA assessments in visual arts. Introducing this concept through having our creative present as a model artist who is from Aranui will bring this concept to life for the students. By learning from someone who has a similar background to them and who now has a successful established practice as an artist, it will remove barriers—‘If I can see it, I can be it.’ Akonga will explore the concept of visual storytelling - how can they tell their story as an akonga at Haeata? What stories do people think of or hear about Haeata and/or Aranui and/or them personally? What stories do you want them to hear? How can we tell these stories through photography? 

The project will also incorporate the cultural narrative gifted to the school by Ngāi Tūāhuriri as a framework - the naming of buildings and spaces followed the narrative of local Māori history including the environment, tūpuna, and species that traditionally lived in Aranui and its surroundings. As our creative said, “I feel there would be a lot of power in presenting what already exists in their local environment rather than what is beyond their control. Having your students unfold their realities whatever their nature.”

Project starting: February 2022

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