Paora says the process of making art has opened his mind and heart. An Abstract Contemporary Māori Artist (AMCA) based on Matakana Island, he had a relatively late start to the art world—but boy, does he have talent!
Through his work, Paora explores his relationship with Māori culture. It has been somewhat tumultuous for him, having experienced a dysfunctional upbringing that saw him shun his heritage for a large portion of his life. Paora’s participation in the 2014 ‘Kokiri Putahi’, the International Indigenous Artists Hui, has helped him to embrace his Māori heritage and culture more fully within his own art practice. To meet Paora is to catch his enthusiasm, knowledge, and affection for Māori myths, taonga, popular culture, and art history. A significant feature of his work comes from a British Museum book called ‘Taonga Māori’, displaying many indigenous artifacts, such as a Heru comb. Using freehand drawing and a variety of printing techniques, Paora produces some remarkable pieces inherent to his ancestry.
Primarily, he creates one-off editions, so that many of his pieces can never be repeated once purchased. Along his art journey, Paora has developed his own forms of printing, including a clever style of multi-pass screen-printing by hand, which adds to the detail and depth of his works. Alongside this, he has developed ‘jet-screen prints’, a unique method of inkjet printing a digitally created background before adding screen-print layers. This results in many distinctive and unrepeatable multimedia artworks. There is an extensive collection of Paora’s work in the gallery, and we know you will find a one-of-a-kind piece that calls to you!