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Outstanding Native American Artist Coming To Our Shores

26 Sep 2011

This content is tagged as Multi-Artform .

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One of the Pacific Northwest's most prominent indigenous artists, Joe Feddersen, has been chosen as a visiting artist in residence in Aotearoa for 2011.

One of the Pacific Northwest's most prominent indigenous artists, Joe Feddersen, has been chosen as a visiting artist in residence in Aotearoa for 2011. He arrives in New Zealand this weekend.  

The residency programme, Toi Sqwigwialtxw, (pronounced sqweg-voi-out) is an initiative between Te Waka Toi, the Māori arts board of Creative New Zealand; and the Longhouse Education and Cultural Centre, Evergreen State University in Washington, United States of America.

Joe Feddersen is a Native American artist from the Colville tribe, Washington. Best known as a print maker, his work is influenced by the geometric designs of Plateau Indian artistry and his own Native American heritage.  His career also spans painting, three-dimensional constructions like basketry and glass sculpture, carving, photography and computer-generated imagery, as well as teaching.  

“Joe Feddersen is a visual artist of exceptional quality. He comes to us with an extensive national and international exhibition record,” says Kura Te Waru Rewiri, Te Waka Toi board member.

“We look forward to sharing tikanga Māori as the founding principle of this residency. Manaakitanga, or a quality of care that reflects the privilege of hosting, will be warmly extended to Joe. And tau utuutu or reciprocity, will support the exchange to be ongoing and mutually beneficial,” explains Ms Te Waru Rewiri.

During his residency, Mr Feddersen will participate in Maori Art Market in Wellington as an invited international guest artist. He will also attend the National Weavers hui of Te Roopu Raranga Whatu o Aotearoa in Kawhia , and be hosted by organisations including Massey Univeristy and Te Wananga o Aotearoa.

Initially a 12 week visual arts residency, in 2008 the initiative grew into a biennial exchange. It now runs for up to three months and is open to indigenous artists who have demonstrated excellence in their chosen art form. The residency provides professional development opportunities for Māori and Native American artists, and the chance to broaden networks with other indigenous artists from the Pacific Rim.

After retiring from teaching in 2009, Mr Feddersen returned to his birthplace near the Colville Indian Reservation.  There he works with glass and is involved with Pilchuck Glass School and the Museum of Glass. He is a curator and member of the Colville Confederated Tribal Arts & Humanities Board.

In 2009 Larry McNeil, a Tlingit artist from Alaska and Professor of Photography, was the visiting artist in residence. He was hosted by institutions including Auckland University of Technology, Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi, Massey University, Toi Māori and Te Papa.

The success of this residency is evident in its development into a mutual exchange programme, and the quality of New Zealand artists who have been involved; weaver Tina Wirihana (2006); master carver Takirirangi Smith (2007); visual artist June Northcroft Grant (2008), and Henare and Tawera Tahuri (2010).