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Rainbow Artists Talk About Their Lives

Rainbow Artists Talk About Their Lives


  • Sat 15 Oct, 2:00pm – 3:30pm


Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, Cnr Kitchener and Wellesley Streets, Auckland CBD


All Ages

Registration Types:

Join us for an exquisite insight into the lives and work of four Rainbow artists as they talk about their art practice and their personal journeys into and with the Rainbow communities.

Zena Elliott (Ngāti Awa, Te Whānau-ā-Apanui, Ngāti Rangitihi, Ngāi Te Rangi, Te Arawa), Sara Moana (Ngāti Tamaoho, Tainui), Rebecca Swan and Steve Lovett sit down for a friendly chat and ask each other the questions that pique their curiosity. The conversation will be artist-led. Hear about what inspires them and where, how or if being part of the Rainbow communities comes into their practice.

Zena Elliott (Ze/Ia/She/Her/Them/They) is a contemporary Māori artist working within the domains of sculpture and painting. Elliott is a PhD candidate at the Faculty of Design and Creative Technologies and the School of Future Environments – Huri Te Ao, Auckland University of Technology.
Steve Lovett (He/Him, They/Them, She/Her) is an artist, educator and education researcher who has lived, worked and been involved in the queer life of Tāmaki Makaurau from the early 1980s. Lovett has recently completed research into social class and literacy acquisition in art education. In 2015 Lovett curated Rereading the Rainbow, a survey show focused on recent queer art practices at Rm Gallery.

In photo-based collages and prints, Lovett explores social, historical representations of queerness and memory. Lovett redeploys historical ephemera from queer subcultures and family narratives to examine loss, ecstasy, and humour – the forces that shape us. These works are drawn from a daily drawing practice constructing collages, digital prints, and silkscreened paintings.

Rebecca Swan (She/Her) is an interdisciplinary artist from Aotearoa, New Zealand. Her work is in public and private collections including Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, The Dowse Art Museum and Te Manawa. She works primarily with photography, video and sculpture. In 2018 she completed a three-month Fulbright residency at Headlands Center for the Arts in San Francisco. Rebecca wanted to undertake a residency that sat lightly on the planet. Part of this was offsetting the 4.2 tonnes of CO2 emissions from her return flight by making 20 tonnes of compost. She has recently trained in microscopy and is analysing the microbial life in the soil, fascinated by the interconnection of all life above and below ground.

Sara Moana (She/Her) was born in Aberystwyth, Wales in 1996 and is currently based in Tāmaki Makaurau, New Zealand. Sara is both of Welsh and Māori descent (Ngāti Tamaoho, Tainui) and works in illustration, creating art full-time after completing her Master of Fine Arts at Elam School of Fine Arts. Moana’s practice explores topics such as identity, mental health, queerness, body-image, existentialism, and feminism. A subversive yet witty approach to serious themes is continuous to her style of work in illustration; aiming to create a safe space that is both light-hearted and approachable for the work to stimulate open conversations in everyday life

This event is NZSL Interpreted by Platform Interpreting NZ, and we warmly welcome members of our Deaf Rainbow community.

We look forward to hosting you and sharing this wonderful event!

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