Shona Tawhiao on NZ Fashion Museum

Shona Tawhiao has received international acclaim for her creative practice, designing and making contemporary woven garments utilising traditional Māori materials and techniques. Her designs have been worn in movies, Shakespearean plays, on stage by musician and other performers, and they have been shown in fashion shows and museum exhibitions all over the world.

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Clea Pettit
My materials

This is flax, also known as harakeke and it’s what I predominantly use for my weaving. Because it’s a raw plant material, not easily accessible in Manhattan (is it?) I’ve customised my collection here to focus on another traditional style called Taniko

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Clea Pettit
Met Friday

As part of the MET’s late night summer programme, last Friday it was the Temple of Denur for a drop-in drawing demonstration with models wearing garments inspired by Issey Miyake.

THIS Friday we were on the rooftops overlooking the New York sky line. What was exciting was that the MET MediaLab were hosting live models specifically to wear my designs.

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Clea Pettit
Hostess with the Mostess

Maia Nuku is the Associate Curator for Oceanic art and is responsible for the Oceania collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and she is my primary point of contact here in New York. As well as developing collaborative projects with artists and scholars she also oversees permanent displays in the galleries and develops exhibitions and programs to engage new and diverse audiences.

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Clea Pettit
The Highline to Whitney

The High Line is a community-driven public park built on a historic freight rail line elevated above the streets on Manhattan’s West Side. It runs from Gansevoort Street in the Meatpacking District to West 34th Street, between 10th and 12th Avenues. Meandering along what was once a railway track provided yet another perspective of this vast city and its rich history.

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Shona Tawhiao
Showing @ 51 Seventh Ave, NY 10011

Two days before my departure, I was given the thumbs up by Ora Gallery that everyone was on board with incorporating my work into a show entitled “Living as Form” by Paramount Winner of the 24th Wallace Art Awards’ Visesio Siasau and his partner Artist Serene Tay. Thanks guys for not only welcoming me into your show but for looking after me in New York!

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Shona Tawhiao
Costume Institute Pt 1

Today we viewed the upper floor of: Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology. Organised by the costume institute, it has exhibited to over 350,000 visitors since opening on May 5. Due to the demand the show has now been extended until September 5. It was definitely awesome to see this part of the..

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Clea Pettit
Virtual Reality Tilt Brush

Tilt Brush lets you paint in 3D space with virtual reality using a headset and a controller which, in my limited experience, is as hard as it sounds. Since this was my very first time, I’m not going to show you the blobs I created, but I’m told once you get into the swing of things, you can “unleash your creativity with three-dimensional brush strokes, stars, light, and even fire” woah

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Shona Tawhiao
1000 Fifth Avenue

“Lastly, Shona Tawhiao stood out from the rest with her masterful skills of weaving flax into unique and exquisite sculptures. Tawhiao is a fibre artist and an acutely adept one too. Her collection is entitled ‘Te Whiri’ and based on traditional warrior attire.” – Six years ago this collection was born out of my desire to weave all that…

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Shona Tawhiao
#KiaOraNYC

RAKEITIA (Ra-K-TeeAh) means ‘To Adorn’ in Māori and is the name of the latest collection of harakeke couture I’ve been working on for my artist residency.

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Shona Tawhiao
Maori Troilus and Cressida

The performing arts group Ngakau Toa staged a production of Shakespeares Troilus and Cressida. The group played to appreciative sold out crowds in New Zealand and to rave reviews at the Globe Theatre in London during the globe to globe international festival in April 2012. Shona Tawhiao designed the costumes for this brave and challenging enterprise.

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Shona Tawhiao
Shona exhibits at Tauranga Art Gallery

As fans and followers alike are aware, Shonas stunning work is as much art, as fashion. With impeccable detail and precision the sculptural geometric forms of the garments combine with natural and organic lines and flow. It was only fitting that her garments be displayed at the Tauranga Art Gallery during May 2015

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Shona Tawhiao