An innovator of the contemporary Pasifika art scene as a long-standing member of the art collective the Pacific Sisters, Sistar S’pacific aka Rosanna Raymond embodies the cutting edge. Born in New Zealand, Rosanna's Samoan heritage has fuelled her artistic practice re-constructing notions of the Dusky Maiden through Live Art using performance, poetry, installation, body adornment and costuming to create modern day garments for ceremony and the every day. Using her own aesthetics to reclaim and embody the power and dynamism of the Dusky Maiden, activating a living dynamic allowing the past to be present, creating a relational space that is woven into the physical works she creates.
Precious materials are gathered from the Pacific mixed with recycled and found materials, hair, seeds, shells, coconut, pigs tusks, sharks teeth, bone, bark cloth, semi precious stones and plastic beads are hand crafted and made in limited editions with aroha –love and whakamiha-respect to the materials as they become rarities in today’s industrial and commercialized world.
Sistar S’pacific’s presence in Europe is part of the growing awareness of, and opportunities for contemporary Pacific arts. Her costuming and jewellery is included in private and public collections including Museum für Völkerkunde, Frankfurt, Germany, Te Papa, NZ, National Gallery of Victoria, Australia, Cambridge University Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, UK, Royal Albert Museum Exeter UK.
A dynamic artist, her work is consistent in its celebration of Pasifika and the engagements it invokes and evokes; whether between museum collections and contemporary Pacific art or museums, art galleries and urban spaces.
Photos courtesy of Kerry Brown (photos top right and below 1,2,3 and 6), Salvador Brown (photo 5 below) and Greg Semu (photo 4 below)