Ngaromoana Raureti Tomoana, Indigenous Village Artist, Story Teller and Ahi Kaa
Thesis DisciplineArt History
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Arts
Ngaromoana Raureti Tomoana is a painter from the East Coast of the North Island. In more than 30 years she has produced and shown a large body of work, like many other women artists concurrently juggling motherhood and artistic performance. Over approximately the last 10 years, she has formalized her education completing the Advanced Diploma for Maori Visual Arts at Toihoukura in Gisborne as well as a Bachelor of Arts and a Masters of Maori Visual Arts at Massey University.
The artist, who identifies as an Indigenous Village Artist, is hardly known outside her local area of Northern Hawkes Bay, and, apart from a short feature in Mataora , a picture in Te Ata , and various catalogue entries, little has been written about her work. This thesis introduces Ngaromoana Raureti Tomoana and explores the notion of an indigenous village art. I incorporate feminist and postcolonial discourses into a political and critical engagement with her art, which addresses issues of village and land based cultural identity as well as race and gender. I argue that her work is politically motivated and important in the context of contemporary Maori art. Furthermore, based on a holistic world view, it simultaneously reaches out into the wider, global community. Intertwining local and personal history, her oeuvre is the manifestation of a female path and a female perspective, of identification with her village and beyond.