KO WAI AU?
I had the privilege of being raised by my grandparents, who taught me how important our whenua is to us. My koro would return from the bush with leaves from different plants and trees. We would sit together in the evenings and he would teach me the names of the plants and what they could be used for.
My grandparents nurtured in me a life long fascination with plants and how they can nourish and heal us. I have always been a maker.
I need to make things, it is my Soul Time.
I am able to raise my children on my home land, and this helps me to reconnect with Papatūānuku. For my husband and I, the most important thing is for us is to teach our chilren how to live off their whenua, to be independent, and to respect and look after the whenua for those yet to come. There is no greater satisfaction than being able to put kai on the table and know where it has come from. We know that any animals slaughtered to feed us have been shown respect throughout that process.
I am self taught, often when I am creating I will connect with my tīpuna (ancestors) and they will guide me thorough the process so that everything is made with aroha (love) and healing in mind.
Ko Puke nui o Raho te maunga
Ko Waiotahe te awa
Ko Te Kahikatea te marae
Ko Ngāti Kōura te hapū
Ko Tūhoe te iwi
Ko Joyann Onekawa ahau