Geoff Matautia

July – September 2023

Based in South Auckland, Geoffery Matautia is a photographer and creative, a member of the art collective Raroboys and founder of Period7. Geoff has worked with and created content for the likes of Re:News, Fibre Fale and Te Whanau o Waipareira, and was the stills photographer for TV show Still here (winner of Voyager Media Best video documentary series 2023). His work has been published in Sunday, New Zealand Geographic, Viva and Ensemble.

For three months Geoff developed a project with Papatūnga, based onsite at O Wairoa Marae. Geoff’s research focused on design and photography.

“What does service look like as a Pacific artist within your community?” was the question that centred Geoff’s project with Papatūnga. Upon rediscovering his own family portraits, he was reminded of the importance of capturing these moments, and the value Pacific people place on the documentation of their loved ones. To create a new series of work Geoff utilised social media to reach out to his community offering free family photographs taken outside of their homes. This has resulted in a series of seven portraits of families who responded to his social media call.

Community Service: Family Portraits was presented as a solo exhibition - Geoff's first solo exhibition in Aotearoa, at Tautai Pacific Arts Trust, Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, from 4-11 October 2023, showcasing these portraits alongside a short video work, which itself is a portrait of Geoff’s interactions with the seven families.

Titled using the last name of the family in each portrait (Jackson, Leo, Marsters, Matiseni-Latu, Puiri-Tuia, Siolo, Wilson), each large-scale photograph candidly documents a portrait style sitting. Working with families across Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, these photographs celebrate the unique and relatable moments shared between members of the family in front of the family home. Exploring the concept of service as a pacific artist and creative, Geoff’s work embodies an act of service to his community.

Co-inciding with the exhibition of Community Service: Family Portraits at Tautai, his video work, Responses, also featured in a group exhibition at at Hoea! Gallery and Project Space in Te Tairāwhiti Gisborne in October 2023.

Ashleigh Taupaki

November 2023 – January 2024

Papatūnga is pleased to welcome Ashleigh Taupaki (Ngāti Hako, Samoan) who will be developing her work under the sponsorship of the Papatūnga programme at O Wairoa Marae for the next three months.

Ashleigh works primarily in object, drawing, and research practices. She interrogates systems of power through iwi and place-specific narratives; with decolonial methodologies embedded in the material processes, and the collection of stories and knowledge. Using found, gifted, and natural materials, Ashleigh has developed an expanded mind-mapping practice that emphasises connectivities within social, cultural and environmental ecologies. Through community workshopping, Taupaki uses this mode of engagement to offer a sense of place and material agency to those outside of the institutional and academic space in a way that fosters sharing, relationality and generosity.

Of joining the Papatūnga Project Development programme, Ashleigh says “I am hoping to use this residency to explore ways that text can activate space, and stand alone as an art work. Because my practice is very research driven, I want to close the gap between my writing and my art making so that there is a clearer relationship between the two. I am also looking forward to journaling while at the marae and at beaches near there during my downtime.”