“I have not just shot the fox; I have skinned it as well” explores the fusion of my South Pacific and Western Heritage. My childhood up bring by my PNG mother who framed my early experiences in historic references of her childhood and the traditional practice she continues to carry on and past down to me.
Also me as a contemporary produce of cultural product the works explores the common elements in producing contemporary art in the urban indigenous context. Having been educated and brought up in the context of western society, the works reflect my duplicity within western society, highlighted by a saturated pop reference of modern day culture.
The investigation and interaction between the two worlds have instilled in me a wealth of knowledge and inspiration, some of which has led me to uncover the issues of collectivism in grouping practicing Urban Indigenous Artists. As individuals we address and treat our practices in complete contrast; however the perception of the broader arts sector is such that we are collectively grouped into a niche, which at times doesn’t always reflect the individual (cultural heritage).
Exploring cultural fusionist ideology further will assist in the development of individuality within the context of Urban Indigenous arts practice. It allows me the artists a current understanding of contemporary arts practice of my country of origin and its similarities or differences to my own current practice, positioning me the artist in contemporary art contexts yet acknowledges my own individual cultural heritages.
This work is an opportunity to draw attention to the unique cultural heritage of the individual artists, exploring the cultural platform of the Urban Pacific Artist, in many ways is a celebration of all things that make us unique, whether it is the method of practice or the connection to country. As with traditional indigenous practioners, Urban Pacific Artists also hold their cultural identity in high regard and view it as an integral part of their existence within western society.