Kahoa Kakala is a solo presentation by Māngere-based artist Sione Monu which builds on his experimental work with nimamea'a tuikakala, or the Tongan fine arts of flower designing using the form of kahoa or Tongan garlands. Connecting place, people and the different environments in which he works, Monu’s exhibition brings his expanded family and aspects of the spiritual and ecological contexts of art-making in Tonga and Tāmaki Makaurau together into one room. Held in place by 16 large scale photographs, Kahoa Kakala will create the space for a series of workshops and talanoa in relation to Monu's practice of the Tongan fine arts of nimamea'a tuikakala to unfold.
Hūfanga Professor 'Ōkusitino Māhina and Kolokesa U. Māhina-Tuai will join Sione Monu in conversation to discuss the influences on his works and his making processes within a Tongan indigenous perspective of Tongan arts, focusing specifically on the Tongan fine arts of nimamea'a tuikakala. Workshops in the practice of Ngatuwise tui Kakala and Kahoa Heilala will be led by artists Evesi Vao and Sulieti Fieme’a Burrows. Sione Monu will be in residence at Fresh Gallery Ōtara for the duration of the exhibition.
Sione Monu is an artist of Tongan descent who works across the mediums of photography, moving-image, fashion and adornment, performance and drawing. Sione is a contributing member of the art collectives Fafswag and Witch Bitch.
Kahoa Kakala has been developed in partnership between Sione Monu, Objectspace Assistant Curator Elle Loui August, and Fresh Gallery Ōtara, and will be exhibited at Objectspace in November 2017.