Welcome to Moana (Pacific) today. The Garland marks the second year of its journey across the Indo-Pacific with Te Moana nui a Kiwa, developed in Aotearoa New Zealand. Stories tell of magnificent Māori objects fashioned with skill and meaning today. Moana stories reflect the complex crossing of Pacific cultures, particularly evident in the development of a new art form, the plastic lei. The key idea is that culture is something we can make with our own hands. As they say in Moana, “the past is in front of us”.
Highlights include a quarterly essay by RMIT Graduate Lisa Hilli, that tells of the epic journey to re-create the midi necklace of her Tolai (PNG) ancestors. Articles reflect the innovative material dimension of photography in Aotearoa New Zealand. Knotting recurs as a grounding technique. An online exhibition (sōlevu) reflects the most innovative garlands emerging today. And “Lei at large” draws in parallel practices from Australia, Torres Strait, Colombia India and China. This issue launches new audio and video capacities to heighten the sense of place.
Garland is edited by Adjunct Professor Kevin Murray and in 2018 will be open to peer-review articles about the art of place. The image is of a lei made and photographed by Solomon Islands artist Reina Sutton.
You can find it at www.garlandmag.com/issue-9.