Showing posts with label Samoa Arts Council. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Samoa Arts Council. Show all posts

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Loved by Art





My sister Elizabeth (Lisa) EWEST ART

I've always thought of myself as a future academic since I was playing in the sandbox at Sogi kindergarten. I wanted to study and study.  In Primary school, I needed to top my class because I was told to.   In college, I had to top because receiving a prize at the end was rewarding.  Yes, I am competitive, I'm a little smart and still a student of life. There is greatness all around and within us because we are God's masterpieces.  A few months ago, I founded Pele Project after I fell out of bed and hit my head on the creative side! Now I dream of patterns, circles, colour combos running around my head. When I sit in a room full of academics, CEOs, head of government departments in a meeting, at a conference, in a general discussion, when the discussion gets a big repetitive my brain will switch to the artsy side. I will think dancing colours and lines and no I am not high! I was waiting for it to go away, to leave me be but it simply won't.  I was expected to be


  • be a civil engineer like my father
  • a farmer like my civil engineer-turned farmer father
  • entrepreneur like mother dearest
  • a writer because I'm good at it?
  • an aviator, a pilot because I flew planes as a student pilot for two years 
  • to make something of myself in the aviation world because that's where my passion lies
  • not to meddle in the arts because it's not in my genes, my genes are pre-dominantly Science-Biology, Physics, Maths --no chemistry
  • to work at a desk and fumble with papers all my life

This creative fall has given a girl some bizarre and crazy ideas.  One of them is to sit in the front row at a fashion show while models of all shapes and sizes  (no anorexic models) walk that cat walk with big island smiles on their faces! I read that models are not allowed to smile! For crying out loud, most people don't look at the models, they are just hangers? so why would any one be bothered if they smile or not.
If you look at nature, the colours are infinite which depicts the artistic mind of God.  The universe is bursting at the seams with art.  The very fabric of  the human race is made up of a myriad of colours. Most things that are magnified a hundred, thousand times have colour.  I believe there are colours in nature that we have not yet discovered or named.  Have you seen the ocean depth videos from Discovery Channel? Don't you wish you can touch all those fish? The plants and different species that live in the ocean are amazing.

Art is in our environment, our culture, our siva (dances), our people.  This is where artists draw their inspiration from.There is no limit to art and there is no fence or cage to keep it locked.  There are copycats, there are criminals, there are people with no original thought and lack the ability to think and create on their own.  There are greedy people in this world and we can't avoid that.  We all coexist. Have you counted the colours of starfish? Have you seen the different colours of the ocean? Yes yes, much for than fifty shades of grey! Have you felt the petals of frangipanis, bougainvillea, mosooi and their numerous forms?

Something truly amazing happens when you put paint on paper.  Something within us comes to life.  We cannot help but create beautiful artistic masterpieces because this is a gift from our Creator.  God put colour on this Earth so that people will enjoy them, so a conversation will start between Him and us.  He painted the earth and us so intricately, patiently, softly, marvelously thus we are so 'fearfully and wonderfully made'.  We forget at times that art is not just in paintings.  Art is in movement or action, a spoken word, written word, art is everywhere.  “The great hall was shimmering in light, sun streaming from the open windows, and ablaze with colour, the walls decorated with embroidered hangings in rich shades of gold and crimson. New rushes had been strewn about, fragrant with lavender, sweet woodruff, and balm... the air was... perfumed with honeysuckle and violet, their seductive scents luring in from the gardens butterflies as blue as the summer sky.”
~Sharon Kay Penman, Devil's Brood

Last week I was invited to Samoa Arts Council's Fashion and Art Show at Sinalei Reef Resort. It was a great night showcasing the arts.  There was dancing, fashion,speeches, collaborations, networking and glorious food! I wish more people were there and I wish more Samoans took interest in studying, participating, preserving our OWN art instead of complaining when non-Samoans do. Unless we take ownership of our own art and give it the pedestal it deserves, others will keep copying, exploiting, selling, cheapening our art.  We are proud when we hear of our tatau (tattoo) being discussed in international circles and we are proud of our Manu Samoa wearing tattooed jerseys on the field, we are proud to wear lavalavas for summer in New Zealand and Australia yet how little we know about the history! I for one know very little about the arts but I'm learning everyday.  I don't know where most of our artwork/siva/designs/movements are from.  There is room to learn, there is time to accumulate knowledge, there is time to wake up and take ownership of what's ours.  Are those forms of art truly ours? They must have originated from somewhere and we may never know.  I know all things start from the Creator so I can confidently say that art originated from the creator of the Universe!

How else can we explain the wonder, the mystery, the beauty of art?

“I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn't say any other way - things I had no words for.
Georgia O'Keeffe”
Georgia O'Keeffe

Ehhh..your grandmother was hot too!

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