Press Release – Maori Art Market
Women’s stockings with traditional Maori designs by a Te Arawa master carver were a hot item that flew out the door at the biennial MAORI ART MARKet held in the Te Rauparaha Arena over the weekend.11th October, 2011
Maori Art Market Launches Fledgling Artform Stockings Business
Women’s stockings with traditional Maori designs by a Te Arawa master carver were a hot item that flew out the door at the biennial MAORI ART MARKet held in the Te Rauparaha Arena over the weekend.
Maori weaving artist Leilani Rickard and Auckland architect Pahnia Skinner sold hundreds of pairs of the New Zealand-made stockings that incorporate designs by master carver Lyonel Grant. The Iwi Creations range includes unique traditional influenced designs created by Lyonel in full length, three quarter length anklets that have been influenced by Ta Moko or traditional tattoo.
The Iwi Creations business had only been going for nine days and already the order books are full with women clamouring to get onto their database as new designs roll off the production line.
“Finally there is something elegant and sophisticated that’s just for women who want to show their Maori and New Zealand heritage in a subtle way,” Ms Skinner said.
“We sold hundreds of pairs over the four-day show, we ran out of business cards and a major Wellington fashion shop wants us to sign up.
“The business is only nine days old and we’ve got lots of new ideas for various other fashion items buzzing around our heads at the moment,” she said.
The Iwi Creations founders were part of a Maori artists’ movement that attracted more than 9000 visitors who came to see the biggest ever collection of contemporary Maori art ever assembled. The work included paintings, glassware, greenstone, jewellery, claywork, carving, weaving, opera, music, cuisine, story-telling and a fashion parade.
Creative director Darcy Nicholas said artists reported strong sales. While many of the smaller and lower-priced items bought by tourists wanting permanent reminders of their Rugby World Cup tour of New Zealand there were some serious collectors picking up new pieces by internationally recognised artists.
“Contemporary Maori art is becoming a movement where the artists can get together every two years and with the work becoming increasingly recognised by serious art collectors both locally and internationally, buyers were very keen to see new work by the established artists,” Mr Nicholas said.
“MAORI ART MARKet also serves as a yardstick for emerging artists to see where they need to head with their work if they have aspirations for full-time careers in this industry,” he said.