“Square Eyes” will celebrate and validate our voices

2 04 2011

Artist and educator, Leilani Kake, is organising Square Eyes – a Pacific film night in the 2011 South Auckland Pacific Arts Summit…

Tell us why you wanted to do this event
I guess to have a free, open forum to celebrate the mediums of film and video art. With technology such as video capable mobile phones and YouTube, young people have access to creating stories and communicating them internationally. Video installation is increasingly visible in the art schools because I think the message is immediate.

Tell us about the selection process
It’s a little bit of everything from established film makers to emerging film makers to video artists. It’s about relaying no kind of hierarchy but to celebrate the kaupapa.

What do you love about seeing Pacific Island stories in the medium of video and film?
With Pacific Island stories and storytellers, there’s no one fixed Pacific Island identity – there are so many different stories and we can all celebrate them. For our younger generations, whether its stories from the Islands or New Zealand-born stories, they all relate to us. And whether you’re from South Auckland, or from California, we all have that common thread of being Pacific Island – it weaves us together. Square Eyes will celebrate and validate our voices.

Is it important that video art is seen in the context of short film and traditional filmic language?
It’s a good coat tail to ride on! Video art is so experimental so I think it’s a good way to break up a programme of short films. It might be quite hard to get an audience to come and watch video art, so it’s a good way to broaden the audience for video art. It also broadens the audience’s experience of the medium of moving image.

Pollywood Shorts happens once a year around the Auckland region, what’s on offer that’s different from Pollywood?
It’s great to have different varieties of Pacific film festivals, however our one is free! Spending money on parking, transport and entry fees is actually a luxury and it’s sad when art becomes a luxury for our communities.

Creating an opportunity with the Faculty of Creative Arts at Manukau Institute of Technology and the South Auckland Pacific Arts Summit with local audiences is a really positive move for film and video art, and arts in general in South Auckland.

Thank you, Leilani!

Catch Square Eyes from 6pm, Friday 3 June at the Faculty of Creative Arts, Z Block, Manukau Institute of Technology, Otara, South Auckland.

Free and all welcome!

Here Leilani discusses her visual arts practice with reporter Malama Papau on Tagata Pasifika [TVNZ]

November 2010

In 2008, Leilani organised the Manukau Film Festival at Metro Theatre in Mangere East. She is a passionate advocate for Pacific art and artists and is currently showing a 4-channel video installation, Ngā Hau E Whā – The Four Winds at Fresh Gallery Otara.

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