Houkamu’s work reflects the influence of her whakapapa (genealogy). A strong integration of Maori and Pacific Island patterns that derive from ta moko and tatau (tattoo) are present in her works. She shows the intricacies of these patterns and the tactile nature of the marks of the uku in contrast with the bold, simple shapes and forms.
Stevei’s first experience with Uku started with a small pinch pot in 2011 at a Wananga with guest tutors Wi Taepa, Manos Nathan and Baye Riddell. From that moment on her fascination, commitment and love of Uku has continued to grow.
Maori uku art began its development in the 1980s with the formation of Nga Kaihanga Uku, the national Maori clayworkers’ association. In the decades since, uku has evolved to become an established material, adding its own unique voice to conversations about contemporary Maori art.
Stevei is represented in Wellington by Kura Gallery.
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