Have your say about cultural sector support

Some in the CTANZ community have been taking a professional and personal interest in the Government’s response to COVID-19’s effects on the creative sector. In case you’ve missed it (and you might very well have, thanks are due to The Big Idea’s Lowdown mailing for highlighting this), the Ministry for Culture and Heritage (MCH) has drafted an approach for three new cross-sector funds as part of the Arts and Culture COVID Recovery Programme: The Cultural Sector Capability Fund, the Creative Arts Recovery and Employment (CARE) Fund and the Cultural Sector Innovation Fund.

The consultation period on this is short, closing 5pm on Tuesday 22 September. Mark Amery’s Lowdown summary makes some very useful points, and the documents and feedback forms are here.

As Amery notes, this consultation is MCH rather than Creative New Zealand, but CNZ is also soliciting feedback on any experience of the organisation over the past year. If you’ve applied for grants or looked for information lately, this includes you, so Client Satisfaction Survey.

Among the things they’d like to know about are accessibility of web information, funding application portals and processes, quality of advice. It’s an anonymous survey, which closes Wednesday 30 September, 11pm.
Creative New Zealand client satisfaction survey

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Queen’s Birthday honours: congratulations to Maureen Lander


Wonderful to see leading fibre artist and longtime CTANZ member Dr Maureen Lander awarded MNZM in the Queen’s Birthday honours list.

LANDER, Dr Maureen Robin

For services to Māori art

Dr Maureen Lander is a leading exponent of raranga (weaving) and installation art.

Dr Lander began learning whatu kākahu (cloak-making) skills from Diggeress Te Kanawa in 1984 and started exhibiting her work in 1986. Her works have been shown in key exhibitions in New Zealand and overseas including ‘Pu Manawa’ at the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa in 1993 and ‘Pasifika Styles’ in 2006 at the University of Cambridge’s Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. Her exhibition ‘Flat-Pack Whakapapa’, organised by the Dowse Art Museum in 2017, is currently touring nationally. She was Senior Lecturer in Māori Material Culture at the University of Auckland’s Māori Studies Department and has continued to mentor aspiring Māori artists and kairaranga (weavers) after retiring from university lecturing in 2007. In 2002 Dr Lander gained a doctorate in Fine Arts from Auckland University, the first person of Māori descent to gain a doctorate in Fine Arts from a New Zealand university.

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You’re getting mail!

The Costume & Textile Association of NZ has two major membership activities: an annual symposium and a journal twice a year. This year is obviously going to be different. We hope you’re all keeping healthy and cosy and there are definitely reports of sewing and other projects being undertaken.

Unsurprisingly, we’ve had to defer this year’s symposium until next year. With so much uncertainty around gatherings, even a few months further along, this was not a hard decision. The next symposium will still be in Auckland, with dates and venues to be advised later in 2020.

But Context is exactly where it should be – with editorial team Linda Tyler and Jennifer Matheson putting the finishing touches to another 100 or so pages of papers and reviews. At a time when we can’t get out to the world, this one brings the world to us, with stories about costumes and textile from Aotearoa, Samoa, Spain via France, Myanmar via Nelson, and the far northern hemisphere home of the Sámi.

We’re looking towards printing and mailing to members soon – so if you haven’t yet renewed your membership, there’s a small window left.

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Symposium 2020 – it’s not as late as you think

“Jackie O” printed textile by Joanna Campbell. Collection of Auckland Museum 2018.5.1, All Rights Reserved.

“Jackie O” printed textile by Joanna Campbell. Collection of Auckland Museum 2018.5.1, All Rights Reserved.

As you busy yourself with tying up the loose ends on your abstract for this year’s CTANZ symposium, Vision: Hindsight, Foresight, Insight, scheduled for Auckland at the end of July, some good news. Yes, they were due today, but out of the goodness of their hearts, the organising team have extended the deadline to next Monday, 16 March, instead. So, you have another few days to refine that great new idea you’ve had. The Auckland team look forward to receiving it.

Some more official stuff – have you joined or rejoined? Please pay your membership by the end of March. If you’re already a member, you know the drill: direct credit and let Bronwyn Simes know you’ve done so. If you’re new, drop Bronwyn a line about joining, she’ll be delighted to hear from you.


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Happy 2020

“Jackie O” printed textile by Joanna Campbell. Collection of Auckland Museum 2018.5.1, All Rights Reserved.

“Jackie O” printed textile by Joanna Campbell. Collection of Auckland Museum 2018.5.1, All Rights Reserved.

Welcome to another year. We hope you’ve all been able to enjoy relaxing time with family and friends, and members should have received their copies of the glorious summer issue of Context just before Christmas for their holiday reading.

This issue included three papers from the Nelson symposium: the 2020 symposium in Auckland will be earlier, 31 July – 2 August, and the call for papers is now open. You have a couple of months to scope out your perspective on 2020’s Vision: Hindsight, Foresight, Insight theme; abstracts are due in early March. Full details on the symposium page.

Also in the latest issue, reviews of several of many of the textile exhibitions from throughout 2019. If you’re in Wellington, or visiting, you can see Suffrage in Stitches at the Wellington Museum until early April. Other exhibitions around the country include The Pompoms at Christchurch’s CoCA gallery. Designers Julieanne Eason and Carl Pavletich of Shades Arcade have used more than 150 metres of crimson fabric for “an immersive installation made up of ten giant pompoms which dance and swirl to a choreographed routine” (until 2 February). The Dunedin textile community is looking forward to the opening on 10 January of Areez Katki’s much-lauded Bildungsroman, featuring embroideries drawn from exploration of his cultural heritage (Indian/Iranian/Zoroastrastrian). Areez will be in Dunedin for the opening weekend to present a talk on Saturday 11 January at 1pm, and a hands-on workshop 2-4pm (booking required).

Other  exhibitions still on through January in the North Island include Nomads, the exhibition at the Dowse featuring Zena Abbott and Emma Fitts. In Auckland, there’s jewellery: at Te Uru, Handshake 5, and at Objectspace, Elena Gee: World/Body/Myth. Objectspace is also currently exhbiting Ena Snuggles, a quilt created by Mark Braunius in collaboration with Brenda Ronowicz.

There’s more to come during the year, so we’ll keep you posted. Thanks to all of you who have let us know about other events and exhibitions during 2019 and keep the information coming.


Posted in Artists, Auckland, Christchurch, Context Magazine, Dunedin, Embroidery, Exhibitions, Lectures & Talks, Suffrage, Textiles, Wellington, Workshops | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

More talks about dressing, and art, and men

To round off the year, some more interesting talks in Dunedin and Wellington connected to Massey’s Millennial Masculinities conference (at the College of Creative Arts, 10-11 December). Keynote speakers Professor Christopher Breward and Dr Shaun Cole will speak at Te Papa and the Dunedin Public Art Gallery.

Thursday 12 December, 6.30-7.30pm, Soundings Theatre, Te Papa

Collecting & Exhibiting LGBTQI Fashion & Dress

Join Dr Shaun Cole, Winchester School of Art, University of Southampton, to celebrate and analyse the history of LGBTQI fashion representation in museums and galleries across the world. Enjoy a glass of bubbly after work and explore this fabulous world of fashion which is coming into the spotlight ever more.

Also on Thursday 12 December, 6.30-7.30pm, Dunedin Public Art Gallery

A History of Fashion in Art

Professor Christopher Breward, Director of Collection and Research, National Gallery of Scotland is detouring from Wellington to Dunedin to reflect on examples of fashion painting from the collection of the National Galleries of Scotland’s  representations of fabrics and clothing, their textures and social meanings.

Christopher will return to Wellington for one further Friends of Te Papa session:

Saturday 14 December, 11am-12pm, Rangimarie, L3, Te Papa 

History of the Suit

This lecture, based on Christopher’s recent celebrated book ‘The Suit: Form, Function & Style’ (Reaktion, 2017), unpicks the story of this most familiar ensemble, from its emergence in Western Europe and the Mughal Courts in the seventeenth-century to today.

The Dunedin lecture is free, the Wellington events are organised by Friends of Te Papa and presented in partnership with Te Papa and Massey University. More details, including ticketing for the Te Papa sessions, available through the links above.


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Crafting Aotearoa

tui apronEvery couple of decades, someone takes stock of craft/object art in Aotearoa New Zealand. There was Doreen Blumhardt and Brian Brake’s Craft New Zealand in 1982 and Helen Schamroth’s 100 New Zealand Craft Artists in 1998, both of which won national book awards. The latest in this line is the recently released Crafting Aotearoa, co-edited by Karl Chitham, Kolokesa U Māhina-Tuai and Damian Skinner, published by Te Papa Press. Unlike its predecessors, its temporal and geographical scope is wide, covering three centuries across the wider Moana / Pacific region. It almost goes without saying that this is a substantial and handsome work which will take some time for anyone to digest; it includes nearly 70 essays by dozens of experts. A significant tranche relate to textile crafts, and CTANZ members are among the many contributors: Stella Lange on school needlework, Natalie Smith on wearable art and Jane Groufsky on quilting, just for starters.

While the book itself will be consumed bite by bite, courtesy of Auckland Museum, there’s more, a selection of online essays as a sister project. Again featuring several CTANZ names, the six sections include  Textiles and Jewellery and adornment.  Among the topics here, Jane Groufsky offers some insight into one of her specialist subjects, bird-related textiles such as the tui apron above. Enjoy this little trove of gems!




Posted in Auckland, Books, Craft, CTANZ people, Embroidery, Jewellery, Maori, Pacific Islands, Textiles | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Looking ahead to Symposium 2020

A heads-up that next year’s symposium has a date – 31 July – 2 August; a place – Auckland University of Technology; and a theme – Vision: Hindsight, Foresight, Insight.

The symposium page has been updated http://costumeandtextile.co.nz/symposium-2/ so you can start envisaging what you might want to think about in advance of the call for papers, which will be coming soon. We’ll keep you posted.



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New exhibitions – Auckland and Wellington

Lema Shamamba, Mulame, 2019. Image: Samuel Hartnett. Images supplied.

Lema Shamamba, Mulame, 2019. Image: Samuel Hartnett. Images supplied.

Just opened this weekend (19 October), textile exhibitions at two of the country’s most recognised centres of craft/object art. At Objectspace in Auckland, Mulame is the first solo exhibition by Lema Shamamba, a community leader, educator, mother and storyteller who arrived in Aotearoa New Zealand in 2009 as a refugee from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Mulame’s work originated as stories first drawn to overcome language barriers, then further translated into embroidered narratives, equally personal and political. (Keep an eye out for a review of Malame in the next issue of Context.)

Lema Shamamba, Mulame, 2019. Image: Samuel Hartnett. Images supplied.

Lema Shamamba, Mulame, 2019. Image: Samuel Hartnett. Images supplied.

Mulame: Lema Shamamba, Objectspace 19 Oct-24 Nov 2019

Credit: Zena Abbott, Fibre Fall No. 1, date unknown. Collection of The Dowse Art Museum, gifted by the Abbott Family 2018. Image supplied.

Credit: Zena Abbott, Fibre Fall No. 1, date unknown. Collection of The Dowse Art Museum, gifted by the Abbott Family 2018. Image supplied.

At the other end of the island, the Dowse has just opened Nomads, featuring the work of pioneering textile artist Zena Abbott (1922-1993) and the contemporary artist Emma Fitts. Abbott was one of New Zealand’s first professional weavers; in 1987, inspired by a documentary about the Nomad Weavers of Turkey, she developed a collaborative project with the Pakuranga Arts Society Fibre Group, Nomads on the Move. The current exhibition includes Abbott’s original Nomads work and other examples of her work from the Dowse collection, as well as Emma Fitts’s contemporary interpretation.

During the exhibition run, the Dowse has arranged a screening of The Black Tent, a 2019 German documentary about the desert tents of the Yoruk nomads.

Nomads: Zena Abbott & Emma Fitts, The Dowse, Lower Hutt, 19 Oct 2019 – 26 Jan 2020 (The Black Tent, 2 November, 2pm)


Also noted:

Posted in Artists, Auckland, Australia, Christchurch, Dowse Art Museum, Embroidery, Emma Fitts, knitting, Objectspace, Radio NZ, Weaving, Wellington | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

What’s on next…

Now that the symposium is behind us, it’s time to think about the next project. Here’s a few opportunities that may be of interest.

Does a conference in Sweden or Bristol sound like fun for 2020? Check out the call for papers (closing soon) for two Association of Dress Historians conferences next year.

Air miles are not required for a couple of other writing opportunities. New Lit Salon Press is seeking short stories for with a fashion focus for Dress You Up: A Capsule Collection of Fashionable Fiction for the Stylish Reader – works of fiction that directly address the significance of clothes and accessories, with the object at the story’s core. If you have something in that might fit the brief (no pun intended), closing date is 1 December.

Back in Aotearoa, the Handshake Project is looking to support developing craft writers and craft professionals! Deadline is on Nov 22, you must be a NZ citizen with a B.A.

A further symposium footnote on media synchronicity during the weekend. Elizabeth Kozlowski and Surface Design were mentioned during the AGM; on Sunday’s Standing Room Only, Lynn Freeman interviewed Elizabeth’s SD collaborator, Lisa Sinner about her work.




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